Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday inaugurated the first phase of Delhi-Meerut Expressway. The expressway promises to cut down travel time between the two cities to 40 minutes from the current near two-and-a-half hours.
Phase I of the Delhi-Meerut Expressway, stretching from Nizammudin Bridge to Delhi-UP Border, has been completed in a record time of 18 months.
The Prime Minister, along with Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, also travelled 6 kilometres in an open jeep on the 14-lane Delhi-Meerut Expressway, being built at a cost of Rs 7,500 crore.
After the road show, PM Modi is scheduled to fly to Baghpat for dedicating the Eastern Peripheral Expressway (EPE), built at a cost of Rs 11,000 crore, to the nation.
The 135-km EPE, built at a cost of Rs 11,000 crore, has several unique features and is India’s first highway to be lit by solar power besides provisions of rain water harvesting on every 500 metres on both sides and would showcase 36 national monuments and 40 fountains, the minister said, adding it has been completed in a record 500 days.
There are 8 solar power plants on this expressway having a capacity of 4000-kilo watt (4 MW).
The state-of-the-art road will have auto challans for over-speeding, as cameras will capture speed of vehicles, besides it will have provisions of tolling only for the distance travelled.
The highway is equipped with smart and intelligent highway traffic management system (HTMS) and video incident detection system (VIDS) and will set a benchmark in highway construction by being environment-friendly with world-class safety features and smart/interactive infrastructure.
2.5 lakh trees have been planted here including transplant of 8-10 year old trees and drip irrigation provision has been done
A lot of traffic, outbound or non-destined for Delhi will be diverted, and at least 50,000 vehicles going to Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan will be diverted, bringing down vehicular pollution.
The fully access controlled six-lane expressway provides entry and exit designated interchanges only and has 406 structures of which 4 are major bridges, 46 minor bridges, 3 flyovers, 7 inter-changes, 221 underpasses and 8 road over bridges (ROBs). The amenities include retail fuel outlets, rest rooms, motels, restaurants, shops etc.
Some of the monuments’ replicas pertain to Ashoka Lion, Ashoka Chakra, Konark Temple, Jalianwala Bagh, Gateway of India, Qutab Minar, Char Minar, Lal Quila, Kirti Stambh, India Gate, Hawa Mahal and Gujarat Carving.
The Delhi-Meerut Expressway will allow commuters to travel from the national capital to Meerut in 45 minutes. The six-lane expressway starts from the Nizamuddin Bridge in Delhi till the Uttar Pradesh border and is being built at a cost of Rs 7,500 crore.
It also has vertical gardens with solar system on the Yamuna Bridge.
The Yamuna Bridge on the expressway will be the first in the world that have host vertical gardens with solar power system and drip irrigation.
The expressway will also have a cycle track and a 1.5-metre footpaths for pedestrians on both sides.