LEW in want of extension to reduce traffic congestion

Karachi: The Lyari Expressway in its present design is unable to play a big role in reducing traffic congestion as it is linked to chronically traffic-jams hit Mauripur Road.

This crucial project urgently needs an extension by constructing an road or alleviated passageway through the Machaar Colony and marshy lands of the Karachi Port Trust so that the present LEW directly touches the I I Chundrigar Road on one hand and the Hawksbay Road on the other.

The important project of the LEW is presently under-utilized due to huge traffic jams on the Mauripur Road, which consumes hours and discourages many motorists and commuters to use this expressway to reach the commercial district of the city and its port area.

For long the motorists and commuters of Karachi have been demanding from the National Highway Authority (NHA), Sindh government, Karachi Port Trust and other stakeholders to directly link the Lyari Expressway (LEW) to the I I Chundrigar Road through an alleviated road or separate causeway to save their time being lost due to chaotic traffic jams on the Mauripur Road. There is ample land available in slum locality of Machaar Colony (Mohammadi Colony) and nearby marshy lands of the KPT to construct the extension of the LEW to link it directly to the I I Chundrigar Road through ICI Birdge or G Allana Road on one end and to the Hawksbsay Road on the other. This will greatly help in saving time of commuters and ensure increase in daily users of the LEW at least by 10 times, which means 10times higher revenues for the NHA.

Regular users of the LEW have observed that it takes hardly 20 minutes from Suhrab Goth to the Mauripur Road, but it takes more than one hour to cover a short distance of the LEW end at Mauripur Road to the ICI Bridge due to crippling traffic jams.

Illegal parking, roadside encroachments and unruly driving of heavy trailers and trucks clog the Mauripur Road and frustrate the motorists who use the LEW to reach the Tower area with an intention to save time and fuel. They say that this project would be incomplete till it is linked to the ICI Bridge/ I I Chundrigar Road near Tower through an elevated link road, tunnel or separate causeway as the case may be.

They said that the benefits of time saved by using the LEW is cruelly wasted due to lingering traffic jams on Mauripur Road and without its direct extensions to I I Chundrigar Road and Hawksbay Road, its full potential could not be tapped. They say if the LEW is connected directly to the ICI Bridge by constructing an alleviated road along the Mauripur Road, or a separate causeway or tunnel through the Machaar Colony over the Pakistan Railway/KPT land it could save precious time and fuel of motorists.

They said presently if even the motorists opt taking Garden/Saddar interchange, the battered roads in Garden and Saddar area and many traffic signals also consume a lot of time. It needs making the route from Garden/Saddar interchange of LEW to Regal Chowk of Saddar ‘signal-free’ to take the full benefit of the LEW. The track of LEW between Garden/ Saddar Interchange and Mauripur Road has also the capacity of at least two more interchanges to facilitate commuters of the Old City area.

It also needs to complete the north bound route of the LEW as soon as possible to facilitate the citizens of Karachi.

Motorists have requested the Prime Minister Mian Mohammad Nawaz Sharif, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, NHA Chairman Shahid Ahsraf Tarar, Karachi Port Trust (KPT) Chairman Vice Admiral (R) Shafqat Jawed and City Mayor Waseem Akhter to play their role in construction of extension of the LEW to facilitate Karachiites and help reduce commuting time of hundreds of thousands of people and also to lessen crippling traffic congestion in the city.

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