UPEIDA has proposed to build six new expressways which improves connectivity to major Hindu pilgrimage sites like Varanasi, Prayagraj, Haridwar and Chitrakoot.
In a move that further expands the expressway network of Uttar Pradesh, the Uttar Pradesh Expressway Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA) has proposed to build six new expressways.
According to the state industry development minister Nand Gopal Gupta ‘Nandi’, this plan is taken up given chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s directive to lay a network of expressways in the state.
The six new expressways proposed by UPEIDA are:
- Prayagraj-Varanasi Expressway,
- Meerut-Haridwar expressway,
- Rampur-Rudrapur expressway (Uttarakhand border via Ganga Expressway, Shahjahanpur, Bareilly),
- Chitrakoot-Prayagraj Expressway,
- Jhansi Link NH 27-Bundelkhand Expressway and
- Vindhya Expressway (Chitrakoot to Mirzapur)
Ganga Expressway connecting Meerut with Prayagraj is currently under construction. With Prayagraj-Varanasi Expressway and Meerut-Haridwar expressway, both major Hindu pilgrimage sites of Varanasi and Haridwya would get direct expressway connectivity.
“In the next phase, Bareilly and Rampur will be connected with the Ganga expressway. The Bundelkhand expressway will also be connected with Prayagraj and Mirzapur districts,” minister Nand Gopal Gupta ‘Nandi’ told Hindustan Times.
UP: An Expressway Pradesh
In July, with the inauguration of the Bundelkhand expressway, Uttar Pradesh got its sixth operational expressway.
Uttar Pradesh became the first state in the country to have 13 expressways. Six of the 13 expressways spanning 3,200 km are operational, while work is underway on seven.
UP’s Operational Expressways:
1. Yamuna (Agra-Noida) Expressway — 165 km
2. Noida-Greater Noida Expressway — 25 km
3. Agra-Lucknow Expressway — 302 km
4. Delhi-Meerut Expressway — 96 km
5. Purvanchal Expressway — 341 km
6. Bundelkhand Expressway — 296 km
Total length = 1,225 km
UP’s Under-Construction Expressways:
1. Gorakhpur Link Expressway — 91 km
2. Ganga Expressway — 594 km
3. Lucknow-Kanpur Expressway — 63 km
4. Ghaziabad-Kanpur Expressway — 380 km
5. Gorakhpur-Siliguri Expressway — 519 km
6. Delhi-Saharanpur-Dehradun Expressway — 210 km
7. Ghazipur-Ballia-Manjhi Ghat Expressway — 117 km
Total length = 1,974 km
Expressways To Enable Growth In Tourism Sector
Apart from enabling industrial growth, the expressways coming up in Uttar Pradesh will also benefit the tourism sector.
“If someone can travel to Chitrakoot from Delhi in five and a half hours, why wouldn’t he go there, spend time as a tourist and come back? If going to Chitrakoot from Delhi takes nine hours, then the person going there has to plan for three days — one day for going, one day for seeing the place and one for the return journey. That, generally, people will not accept. That’s why we have gone for expressways,” Awanish Awasthi, Chief Executive Officer of the Uttar Pradesh Expressways Industrial Development Authority, said in a conversation with Swarajya in 2020.