National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) is set to issue a primary notification for initiating the process acquire 180 hectares of land and four-laning of the NH 169.
The national highway will be four-laned for a stretch of 45 km, from Kulshekar to Karkala, via Moodbidri.
The proposal to upgrade the highway had been moving at a snail’s pace for the past five years. After much dilly-dallying, the officials finalised the route map of the stretch that was then approved by the district administration in December 2017. After nearly 10 months, the NHAI has finalised the proposal on acquiring land to widen the NH 169.
Shirish, the project director of NHAI, told DH, “About 180 hectares of land have to be acquired for the four-laning of the stretch from Kulshekar to Karkala. All the required land for the widening work has been identified. NHAI intends to submit a proposal to the Mangaluru Special Land Acquisition Officer (MSLAO) to initiate the land acquisition process.”
He said that a primary notification for the land acquisition would be published in November.
“The Mangaluru assistant commissioner is also the special land acquisition officer for the project. Of the total 45-km stretch, the land acquisition process for the first 15-km was initiated a year ago. Due to delay in finalisation of the route map for the remaining 30-km stretch, the land acquisition was delayed,” he clarified.
Detailed project report
Sources said that a bypass was planned at Kaikamba and Moodbidri. The proposal includes underbridges at 10 locations to facilitate the movement of heavy vehicles, eight underbridges for the movement of light vehicles and a bridge near Gurupura.
“The widening of NH 169 was entrusted to NHAI Chitradurga as project implementing authority. Now, a separate project implementation unit (PIU) has been set up and the office is located in Tumakuru. Once the work on the four-laning begins, the PIU officers will have to be at the work site. The unit office is likely also to be shifted to Mangaluru in a few months,” the sources said.
“Presently, due to shortage of funds, the Kulshekar-Moodbidri-Karkala highway stretch has not been maintained. The stretch is yet to be handed over to the NHAI. The road is still maintained by the NH wing of State PWD,” sources said.