Flyover stretch gets green nod

GHAZIABAD: Construction work on the flyover (grade separator) on GT Road in Ghaziabad, which has been pending over a green clearance, is set to commence soon. GDA officials said on Wednesday that a no-objection certificate has been granted by the Union environment, forest and climate change ministry to allow construction work on the last stretch of the flyover. While the major portion of the 480-metre-long flyover has already been constructed, work on about 100 metres could not be completed for lack of clearance. Pillars for the last stretch of the flyover had to be constructed in an area that is designated as protected forest in government records. The GDA required permission from the central government to undertake construction work in the area. Officials said about 60 trees would be uprooted from the area. GDA executive engineer Chakresh Jain told TOI, "However, compensatory afforestation in accordance with the rules set by the government will be undertaken in lieu of the trees that will be uprooted." He said a parcel of land would be given to the forest department by the GDA where 10 times the number of trees uprooted will be planted as a compensatory measure. "The district forest department will give us an estimate of the total cost required for afforestation following which we will make the payment to the central government," Jain said. The work order for the entire project has already been awarded to a contractor who will construct the remaining portion of the flyover. According to GDA officials, the flyover will be ready for use by July 2017. The flyover project had been conceived to avoid jams projected at the Meerut Road after the New Link Road, connecting NH-24 with NH-58, was opened to traffic. The New Link Road was formally inaugurated last year but there are traffic jams at the spot because the flyover opening is pending.