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Islamabad: Faisal Avenue underpass ‘to be opened before Eid’

The Capital Development Authority (CDA) started carpeting of the Faisal Avenue underpass road at the Citibank Chowk here on Thursday to give final touches to the project.

“We have completed 25% of carpeting work. Work on the underpass will be finished by September 30 and the road would be opened for traffic before Eid,” a CDA official told ‘The News’ on Thursday.

The CDA’s Machinery Pool Organisation (MPO) was to execute carpeting of 1,050-metre double road of the underpass but it did not mobilise its machinery for the last one week. The official said that they were not allowed to move the machinery from the MPO premises located along the Kashmir Highway after the suicide attack at Marriott Hotel on September 20.

The civic body is already 10 days behind the extended deadline for opening of the underpass despite strict directives from CDA Chairman Kamran Lashari. “There would be no further delay,” the official said.

However motorists who pass through the site of the project were not satisfied with the pace of work. Talking to ‘The News,’ they said that the underpass should have been opened at least one month back.

Sources in the CDA said that the installation of streetlights and to make them operational would take another week. They said that the poles of traffic signals at a crossing, which comes after the underpass towards Faisal Mosque, would be installed between October 7 and 10.

Meanwhile, the cold war and lack of cooperation between the Capital Development Authority and Islamabad Traffic Police would delay the completion of the flyover at the Citibank Chowk. The development work as per deadline was to be completed by December 31.

It has been learnt that traffic police officials were not allowing the construction firm to install the precast structure on pillars of the underpass flyover, apprehending hurdle in the smooth flow of traffic. “ It takes three hours to carry one precast slab with the help of a crane and place it on pillars,” said an official of the construction firm when contacted by ‘The News.’

The same situation surfaced in April last year when traffic police did not allow the contractor to start work on the project till start of summer vacations in academic institutions in June, delaying the project for two months. The development activity was also affected during the last four days due to restriction on the movement of dumper trucks and other heavy machinery in the metropolis.

Source: The News

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