Monday, January 27, 2014

Some positive developments in building National Waterways

I am a strong proponent of building National Waterways and moving freight transport from roads to Rail and Seas. Having a lengthy coastal area and numerous small and big ports should have achieved this goal long time back. However, we stick with land based approach and still suffering the consequences of high transportation cost, traffic jams and pollutions in the road etc.

Some recent decisions by GoI are indeed a welcome step in promoting cargo transport through waterways and local seas.

As per the government press release, "Union Government has decided to take up development of the stretch of 37 Kms of the National Waterway-four (NW-4) between Sholinganallur to Kalpakkam in South Buckingham Canal".

"Minister of Shipping... G.K. Vasan said that the main components of the project include
dredging and excavation to develop navigational channel,
construction of three terminals and navigational locks, 
replacement of one existing bridge at Kelambakkam, and
installation of navigational aids."

Project is expected to finish within 2 years.

"other stretches of the National Waterway-4, which covers the states of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, would also be taken up for development subsequently. NW-4 covers a total length of 1078 Km consisting of Kakinada-Puducherry canal systems integrated with Godavari and Krishna Rivers."

"The canal will be developed to make it suitable for safe navigation of cargo vessels up to 300 ton capacity for transportation of general cargo like food grain, fertilizers, building materials, etc... terminals at Shollinganallur, Mutukkad and Mahabalipuram have been planned."

Completion of this project will benefit cargo, and passenger transport in addition to opening new vistas in tourism sector.


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