Non-motorised vehicle underpass, escalators opened at 3 crossings in Gurugram
In a major relief for pedestrians and non-motorised traffic in the city, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) on Wednesday formally opened the escalators and underpasses at three of the busiest intersections on the Delhi-Gurgaon expressway including Iffco Chowk, Rajiv Chowk and Signature Tower.
These structures are part of the rs 1,700 crore project that started in December 2016 and involved construction of underpasses and flyovers along major intersections on the expressway—part of the larger National Highway-48—which cuts the city in two. While most of these structures were opened for traffic in 2018, the Iffco Chowk underpass was inaugurated on March 17.
NHAI officials said that escalators at all the three locations were tested thoroughly before being opened for public use. The opening of these facilities was done without fanfare as the model code of conduct is in effect, they added.
“The foot overbridges at Rajiv Chowk, Signature Tower and Iffco Chowk, equipped with escalators, have been opened for the public. Underpass for non-motorised traffic at Rajiv Chowk and passenger underpass at Iffco Chowk have also been opened for public use,” NHAI project director Ashok Sharma said. However, he has asked the police to keep a vigil at the underpasses, particularly during the evening hours for safety reasons.
Prior to the opening of these foot overbridges and underpasses, the pedestrians and non-motorized vehicles, such as cyclists and rickshaws, faced considerable difficulty in crossing these high traffic volume intersections.
Meanwhile, residents welcomed the opening of the new infrastructures.
“It will be a lot easier to cross the road now as escalators have been made functional. Also, pedestrian underpasses are good, but security should be ensured,” Ranjan Kumar, who was waiting for an autorickshaw at Iffco Chowk, said.
NHAI also said that it was ready to hand over the underpasses to the Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) as discussed earlier. The highway authority, however, expressed concern over the delay in removal of high power transmission towers at the L-shaped underpass at Iffco and near the Iffco Chowk crossing.
“There are five transmission towers that need to be shifted at the earliest, but a lot of time is being taken to remove these towers. The power department should deploy more men to get the work done as it will ensure seamless movement of vehicles at Iffco Chowk.
Last month, the authority had opened the L-shaped underpass after a delay of over 1.5 years due to legal issues over the shifting of a petrol pump.