KATHMANDU, Oct 21: The government is going to build a flyover and a tunnel to ease the traffic jams at Koteshwar Chowk that has become an everyday problem in Kathmandu's traffic management. For this, the estimated cost is about Rs 25 billion.
Although the government announced this project in its policies and programs for the fiscal year 2017/18, it was not finalized technically. After a study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Japanese Cooperation Mission, the project is now ready to move forward.
According to that, the government is doing homework to negotiate a loan agreement to build a structure with a flyover tunnel (underpass) in the Jadibuti-Koteshwar-Tinkune section.
During morning-evening peak hours in Koteshwar, the vehicles here encounter long traffic jams. The government assigned the JICA to suggest ways to solve this problem.
It is said that the government has chosen one of the three technical options given by JICA in Koteshwar. The Department of Roads (DoR) has chosen the option of constructing an underpass in the middle section including Koteshwar Chowk and constructing a flyover at Tinkune and Jadibuti.
The first two options given by JICA were major infrastructures to connect ring roads. The first option was to build a 1.3 km flyover at a cost of Rs 9 billion on the ring road from Tinkune to Balkumari. The second option was to build a two-way tunnel of Rs 24 billion, 1.2 km crossing the Koteshwar Chowk.
The third option involved the construction of a two-way tunnel with a flyover at a cost of approximately NPR 24 billion. JICA's study indicated that this option would keep the ring road traffic flowing uninterrupted. Consequently, the government is preparing to secure a loan from JICA for this project.
JICA presented the initial report of the study in October 2019. Accordingly, JICA has given the final report. According to this, the loan agreement will be signed soon, said Bijayakumar Jaisi, the Head of the Development Cooperation Implementation Division of DoR.
According to Jaisi, a flyover will be constructed from Manohara Bridge to Pepsicola Chowk. A 600-meter tunnel will be built from Jadibuti to the Munibhairav temple endpoint at Tinkune.
This tunnel will pass beneath the area housing the airport's runway signal lights, without impacting the runway itself.
The project envisions connecting the flyover at the tunnel's entrance to the Munibhairav temple in Tinkune and extending it to the Bagmati Bridge. This design includes the construction of approximately 500-meter-long flyovers on both sides.