The highways authority and its concessionaire’s barricading of either sides of the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway at Signature Tower crossing for the underpass project has compromised road width, leading to snarls.
The barricading has been done on both side lanes of the expressway and also along the dividers, reducing the eight-lane stretch to six lanes.
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) had barricaded the service lanes at Signature Tower chowk last year too, leading to traffic congestion.
Commuters take over 10 minutes to clear the 50-metre barricaded stretch and the travel time increases when machines, workers, earthmovers, and concrete mixers block an additional lane of the expressway for the underpass construction.
In addition, the service lanes are partially barricaded on either sides at the junction and the road leading from Huda City Centre to the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway exit has been barricaded by the Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) for shifting of drainage pipelines.
For commuters who already had to zig-zag their way through the barricaded points and reduced road width, Huda’s work has only added to their distress.
“I understand that the under construction underpass will provide long-term relief and reduce snarls. However, its execution by the NHAI is questionable. They should have barricaded only one site rather than three sites at one stretch and it has made a mess of the traffic,” Chander Vij of South City 2 said.
With the two lanes blocked for movement of vehicles, the snarls stretch till Iffco Chowk on the New Delhi-Gurgaon side and till the Google building exit on the opposite side.
The traffic volume at Signature Tower exit is high as it leads to the Huda City Centre Metro station, Fortis Hospital,
Sector 29 Huda market, Leisure Valley Park, fire department headquarters and the Signature Tower.
For some residents, the delay in emergency services is a greater concern.
“Barricading a stretch which has a private hospital (Fortis) and fire headquarters needs to be executed after consulting with the people concerned and I am not sure whether NHAI officials did that. This can lead to delay in emergency services which can be disastrous,” Nupur Shorya of Sector 17 said.
The NHAI, however, said arrangements have been made for smooth traffic and this will only be a temporary
“We have informed the Gurgaon police regarding the barricades and the expected snarls. It is a temporary obstruction and the work is expected to be completed within three months,” an NHAI official said.