Murad chairs PCIC meeting, decides to start KCR Project

KARACHI (APP): Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Sunday presided over the 11th meeting of the Provincial Coordination & Implementation Committee (PCIC) and decided to take over the Karachi Urban Transport Company (KUTC) to start Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) Project and resolved land issues of Malir Expressway to speed up work on the project.
The PCIC meeting was attended by provincial ministers Imtiaz Shaikh, Sharjeel Memon, Nasir Shah, Mayor Karachi Murtaza Wahab, Special Assistant to CM Qasim Naveed, Corps Commander Karachi Lt Gen Babar Iftikhar, Chief Secretary Sohail Rajput, Chairman P&D Hassan Naqvi, PSCM Fayaz Jatoi. Commissioner Karachi Iqbal Memon, MD SSWMB Imtiaz Shah and others.
The Chief minister was told that the Karachi Urban Transport Company (KUTC) would undertake the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) project. The company was still under the control of the federal government.
The chief minister said that he would talk to the prime minister to take over the KUTC which was responsible to fulfill the documentation of the KCR project.
The CM was also told that Pakistan Railways had demanded equal value of land from the Sindh government to handover the Right of Way (RoW) of KCR. At this, the chief minister said that the Sindh government had given land to the railway authorities purely for railway purposes. “The KCR is also a train and it would operate on the same track, then why the railway authorities were demanding value of the land,” he questioned.
The chief minister directed the DS Railways, present in the meeting, to resolve the issue and give the go-ahead to the provincial authorities so that it could be communicated to the Chinese authorities to initiate the KCR project.
It was pointed out that the National Railways Administration (NRA), China required to conduct an updated feasibility study of the KCR Project. At this the P&D Chairman told the CM that the feasibility study has been done and sent to Chinese authorities.
The chief minister said that now the Chinese authorities have to make a Framework agreement to start the project. Malir Expressway is 3×3 lane, 38.75 KM high-speed controlled access road starting from Jam Sadiq Bridge and ends before the Kathore interchange near M-9. It has six interchanges to be constructed which shall connect major traffic arteries of the city.
The Project is divided into two segments, 15 and 24 km respectively with a construction time of 30 Months. The first section from Jam Sadiq Bridge to Quaidabad is to be constructed within 1.5 Years (18 Months). The completion of the first segment (till Quaidabad) is envisaged by the end of the current year. Construction activities are in progress on Interchanges at EBM Causeway, Shah Faisal, and Bridges over Nallah and Chakora. The Construction activities on road pavement in the first segment are at an advanced stage. NOC of Pakistan Railways (PR) – Objection of PR on design drawings was again discussed and sent back to PR on 1st August 2023.
Construction of Embankment on almost 15 Km out of 24 KMs in progress in the second segment – from Quaidabad to Kathore. The Design related issues pertaining to the 2ndSegment – Right Of way (ROW) passes through Samo, Lasi and Shafi Goths, the dense population settlement, envisaging removal/ compensation of structures.
It has been worked out that 138.2 acres of land would be acquired in the second segment with a tentative land acquisition cost of Rs 3.7 billion.
The Chief Minister directed the P&D dept not to disturb the people living in the villages but construct a 2 km elevated structure (bridge) on the left side of the villages on the existing alignment – at the outer periphery of the right bank of Malir River – bypassing Samo, Lasi, and Old Shafi Goths to avoid land acquisition and relocation. “The provincial govt would pay for the construction of the bridge,” he said.
The CM directed the works dept to complete the first segment of the expressway by the end of November 2023. The CM was told that the Link Road connects National Highway N-5 to Motorway M-9, a 22 km long, four-lane dual carriageway project. Commercial Corridor providing upcountry access to Port Qasim, Industrial areas of Landhi, Korangi, and Steel Mill. There is a grade intersection at N5 and Grade separated Interchange at M-9. The construction of the M-9 Interchange with slip road would cost around Rs2 billion.
The construction of two bridges over M9 – N5 Link Road was undertaken in the additional Scope of M9 – N5 Link Road.
The CM directed the works & Services dept to coordinate with the PPP unit and resolve all the issues and start work on war footings.
The meeting also discussed Mass Transit Projects, Yellow Line, and Redline. Minister Transport Sharjeel Memon told the meeting that the project would be started with the assistance of the World Bank at a cost of over Rs 60 billion. The Yellow Line project is 14.3 km long with 14.3 km at grade, 3.5 km of six underpasses, 1.1 km of two new bridges, one old flyover of 650 meters, and one new 1.45 km flyover.
The project has been divided into six packages. Presently the bidding document was under preparation.
The CM directed the Mass Transit dept to expedite the documentation and start the work at the earliest.
The Redline project has been started with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). It is a 24 km project starting from Malir halt to Numasih.
Sharjeel Memon told the meeting that the work on Lot-1 (Mosmyat to Malir Halt) is 4.5 km and the physical progress of the work is nine percent. The progress on Lot II (Numaish to Mosmyat) is 8.5 percent. The progress on the Lot-III (Municipal Park to Tower) and the installation of the Biogas plant is being made. The land for Biogas has been acquired and minor civil work has been started. Tender documents are being prepared.
The CM directed the Mass Transit dept to speed up work on Lot-I & II and issue the tender document at the earliest for Lot-III.