The construction of Dhaka Bypass, a project worth Tk 2.83 billion, is nearing completion to enable the vehicles from outside Dhaka and those bound for Chittagong and Sylhet to avoid the nagging traffic snarl-up in the capital.
Sources concerned said the 48-kilometre road will hopefully be opened to traffic by March-end.
The bypass, which is a four-lane road with divider in the middle, starts at Joydevpur and links Chittagong Highway at Madanpur, connecting the Sylhet National Highway.
It will be helpful for the vehicles running from Greater Mymensingh and 16 northern districts to bypass the city centre and go to Chittagong and Sylhet without hassles.
Commenting on the progress of the project, one communications ministry source told the FE that almost 90 per cent work had been completed.
The communications ministry has taken up the project in addition to the proposed Eastern Bypass as an immediate remedy to the heavily burdened roads in the capital, the source said.
The source said after the opening of the road the pressure of vehicles on the city streets would come down significantly.
The Dhaka bypass project was taken up in January 2002.
Construction work of smaller bridges and culverts on the bypass is also making fast progress.
The construction work has suffered several setbacks as the finance ministry on a number of occasions had blocked the disbursement of fund following allegations of excess expenditure.
At first, the cost of the project was estimated at around Tk 900 million. But it rose to Tk 2.83 billion amid objections from the finance ministry.
A high-powered committee comprising the officials of the planning ministry had investigated the reasons behind the soaring expenses. It found that the cost went up because the road was being constructed with four lanes instead of two lanes as envisaged in the original plan.
The committee found the higher cost reasonable and recommended release of the funds.