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Legal action unlikely: CDA decision on Faisal Avenue Flyover shortly

ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority (CDA) Board will decide shortly the fate of the ‘sick’ Faisal Avenue Flyover Project, which has fallen massively behind schedule.

CDA Director General (Works) Abdul Jabbar Melano told Daily Times on Monday that the Board could order legal action against the contractor or give the project a financial boost.

He, however, said going into litigation would mean the project getting delayed further.

“If this happens, then we’ll have to go for re-tendering, which is often a lengthy process,” he said.

In this light, the second option appears more practical, especially because the project has moved at a slow pace due to escalation in prices of construction material. “The contractor had not anticipated this and therefore now finds himself stuck,” Melano said.

Though the escalation in costs of steel and bitumen are accounted for in the contract, there is no such clause for petroleum, oil and lubricants (POL). “This is what the contractor is now seeking from the CDA,” he said.

The CDA chairman visited the project site several times since taking over and called for its early completion. However, there has hardly been any visible urgency.

The official said some sections of the flyover might be completed by March, insisting projects do tend to get delayed for one reason or the other.

In October, the underpasses, which form part of the project, were opened to traffic – something that was made possible only after the CDA itself jumped in to do the carpeting work.

While the flow of traffic eased somewhat as a result, the major portion involving putting up the overhead bridges and getting the tarmac ready, remains.

Several deadlines have come and gone yet work on the project, which began more than a year ago, has only seemed to move at a snail’s pace.

The project is being built on the Faisal Avenue at the point where it bisects the Jinnah Avenue. The road runs from Zero Point up to the Faisal Mosque and is among the busiest ones in town.

Meanwhile, Melano said work on the Zero Point Interchange was going ahead of schedule despite the hiccups it faced over the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report.

Pakistan Environmental Protection Agency (PAK-EPA) had ordered suspension of work on the project after the CDA failed to submit the report in question.

A draft report has since been submitted and the CDA now awaits feedback on it before sending in a final version.

Source: Daily Times

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