Islamabad: The Asian Infrastructure Bank of China has agreed to provide the funds required for the development of the Rawalpindi Ring Road project, but has expressed reservations regarding the section built to loop in the capital city, according to a news source.
In order to complete the project in line with its proposed plan to encircle both Islamabad and Rawalpindi, the Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) seeks to construct the loop on a built, operate and transfer (BOT) basis by drawing in private investors.
The previous plan for the Ring Road included a 36km long road from Rawat to Thaliaan on the motorway near the Islamabad International Airport. Thereafter, 28 km were added to the route’s length to connect it to Islamabad via Margallah Road.
However, the AIIB objected to the addition of 28 km to the original length of the road. The local administration decided to bisect the road — with the segment from Rawat to Thalian to be built with Chinese funding and the Sangjani section to be funded by private investors.
The construction of the loop from Sangjani will limit the extra burden on the roads in Rawalpindi and Islamabad. In particular, it will be highly beneficial for the people travelling to and from the Islamabad International Airport.
Commissioner (R) Captain Mohammad Mehmood stated that the design of the roads, bridges, water discharge system and other technical work that was part of the project had been concluded, while the remaining work would be completed by March.
It was also reported that relevant teams would visit and survey the area adjacent to the project to make an assessment about the number of people to be displaced.
The report will be presented to the commissioner next week. The government has allocated PKR 60 billion and extra funds of PKR 2 billion for land acquisition, which is expected to be released to the RDA once the project has been approved.