Aurangabad: Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Sunday said an access- controlled expressway will be constructed between Aurangabad and Pune at a cost of Rs 10,000 crore to considerably reduce the travel time between the two Maharashtra cities.
Gadkari on Sunday dedicated to the nation 86 km of roads on National Highway no. 52 worth Rs 3,216 crore here. He also laid the foundation stone of four other road projects here worth Rs 2,253 crore. ''The distance between Aurangabad and Pune is around 225 km. We will build an access-controlled expressway between these two cities where there will be no turns and the vehicles could move at a speed of up to 140 km per hour. This will reduce the travel time between the two cities to 1.15 hours (as against four to five hours currently). This new alignment will go from Paithan and Ahmednagar regions,'' he said. He also said that a double decker bridge will be constructed on Jalna road in Aurangabad to resolve traffic issues. The minister also spoke about water crisis in the Marathwada region. ''Earlier, I had sanctioned a scheme to resolve the water scarcity in Marathwada. If the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra resolve issues between them, then the Jayakwadi dam (in Auragabad) will get the biggest benefit and it will become full every year,'' Gadkari said. Union Minister of State for Finance Dr Bhagwat Karad demanded an electric vehicle plant in Shendra or Bidkin industrial area here to give a boost to the sector. There is also a need for an international convention centre to promote industrial tourism in Aurangabad, Karad said.