The Capital Development Authority (CDA) will upgrade Jinnah Avenue as a signal-free road to provide smooth traffic flow around Blue Area, the commercial hub of the capital. The decision was made in a meeting chaired by CDA Chairman Farkhand Iqbal here on Monday.
“We are set to execute the idea because traffic snarls on the important avenues impede business activity, besides testing nerves of the motorists,” said Iqbal. He added that the Planning and Engineering Wing has already chalked out a plan and would launch work on the project without delay. The CDA had already constructed two underpasses at China Chowk and Kalsoom Chowk to link sectors G-6 and F-6 and G-7 and F-7 respectively to ensure smooth traffic.
Moreover, the chairman directed the Engineering Wing to provide for all missing facilities on roads across the capital.
He said the CDA has already allocated Rs150 million for repair and maintenance of the roads, carpeting in the markets, roundabouts and footpaths in different areas of the capital. On Jinnah Avenue, the CDA would construct fish-bellies or install cat eyes to ensure smooth movement of vehicles and avert any untoward incident. The CDA will also construct safe U-turns on the road, where it deems necessary. He said the Engineering Wing would soon submit a detailed design of the project before the CDA Board that would approve it for execution.
A comprehensive plan to resolve the parking issue of Blue Area is also being worked out, though the CDA has already specified a service road for the purpose along Fazle Haq Road. Besides, the CDA is also convincing the private parties to help build parking plazas in Blue Area and other main markets of Islamabad including Super Market.
Iqbal said the CDA is mulling to make various other avenues signal-free. He said a plan to develop Islamabad Highway as signal-free is already underway as more interchanges and flyovers have been announced at Airport Chowk, Dhoke Kala Khan and Kuri Road.
Moreover, Kashmir Highway would also be upgraded on the same lines as an interchange is under consideration at Peshawar Mor. The CDA chairman said the development of making the capital’s roads as signal-free is inevitable, particularly if we desire to bring them at par with those of modern capitals of other countries.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 1st, 2012.