LUCKNOW: To improve road network and provide better connectivity to small towns across Uttar Pradesh, the public works department (PWD) will widen 21 state highways spanning over 1,800 km from existing two-lane to four-lane.
Some of the extremely busy ones among the 21 stretches may be monetised to cover the maintenance cost.
While 27 districts are going to benefit across the state, focus is on improving accessibility in towns close to Lucknow to augment infrastructure within the upcoming state capital region.
The PWD has created a network of over 11,000 km of state highways over the years and maintains more than 160 such stretches. Among them 21 are going to be upgraded On Friday, the PWD issued an order to start work on upgrading the highways.
“Improving the road network is paramount for improving the economic activity in the state. For achieving USD 1 trillion economy having strong road network is needed. The busy state highways are being identified for improving seamless road connectivity with enhanced road safety. Best formula to monetise the busy road stretches is also being worked out,” said Sandeep Kumar, engineer-in-chief and head of the department.
The department has engaged Uttar Pradesh State Highways Authority (UPSHA) to carry out detailed feasibility studies and prepare cost estimates.
Set up for promoting private sector partnership to implement state highway projects, UPSHA is expected to suggest how many road assets among the 21 should be monetised.
UPSHA is already maintaining three state highways and commuters have to pay toll charges.
Around Lucknow, the Bilgram-Sandi-Allahganj route in Hardoi, Bhelser-Ramnagar- Mahmudabad route in Barabanki, Bijua-Aliganj-Gola route between Sitapur and Lakhimpur Kheri are among some stretches that will be widened.
In eastern UP too, several towns are going to benefit as Bansdih-Balia- Ghosi route, Naurangiya-Hata- Rudrapur route and Budhanpur-Didarganj-Mehnajpur route are going to be upgraded.
In western UP Kairana-Khatauli route, Kosi-Govardhan-Farah route, Mathura-Sadabad-Jalesar route will also get a facelift.

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