The 86.7 km long stretch of the A-5 highway from Bibile to Chenkalady was declared open by the Chief Government Whip and Highways Minister, Johnston Fernando today.
The new stretch of the highway links Badulla in Uva Province to Chenkalady in the Eastern Province.
While addressing the event, he said the project was considered to be a major boost to the economy by enhancing people’s access to markets and social infrastructure such as schools and hospitals, reducing travel time due to the reduction of traffic congestion, and ultimately reducing the travel cost for passengers and industries.
“The feasibility study of the project to develop this stretch of the A5 main road into a two-lane highway commenced in 2014. The A5 highway from Peradeniya, Badulla, to Chenkalady is 275 km long. Development and upgrading of the road have been done in three phases by two construction companies. The first phase covered the development of a 29 km long stretch from Bibile to Padiyatalawa, The 30 km long stretch from Padiyatalawa to Tempitiya was covered by the second phase. Under the third phase of the project, a 27.7 km long stretch of road from Tempitiya to Chenkalady was upgraded. The 86.7-kilometer-long road from Bibile to Chenkalady was upgraded at a cost of Rs 7,200 million.The Saudi Fund for Development assisted the Lankan government in covering the cost, ” the Minister said.
A sum of Rs 12.4 million has been paid as compensation for the loss of land by people in Bibile, Rideemalaiyadda, Padiyatalawa, and Mahaoya divisional secretariat areas because of the project, Minister Fernando said. (Chaturanga Samarawickrama)
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