PM kicks off 6 key road construction projects

Tuesday, 8 June 2021 01:24 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa along with Highways Minister Johnston Fernando at yesterday’s launch. State Minister of Rural Roads and Other Infrastructure Nimal Lanza is also present


  • 4-lane elevated expressway from New Kelani Bridge to Athurugiriya 
  • 4 flyovers in Colombo and suburbs, one in Getambe 
  • Highways Minister believes completion of these projects will ease traffic congestion

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday inaugurated six road construction projects aimed at easing traffic congestion in Colombo and Kandy.

The six projects include the four-lane elevated expressway from the New Kelani Bridge to Athurugiriya and five new flyovers. 

Speaking after virtually inaugurating the construction work, the Prime Minister said the Government was ready to face challenges, be it pandemic or floods, to serve people with improved development under the President’s ‘Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour.’ 

He also urged for unity among all political parties to overcome the pandemic.

Rajapaksa said whilst travel restrictions may be inconvenient, people must realise the importance of saving lives amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Highways Minister Johnston Fernando said the implementation of the project was in line with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s policy framework and the country’s sustainable development goals. 

“This year’s budget emphasised on finding solutions to the traffic congestion in the main cities,” Fernando said in a statement issued by the Highways Ministry.

The Minister believes the completion of these projects will help ease the current traffic congestion in Colombo, Kandy and their suburbs.

The four-lane elevated expressway is a 16.4 km project from the New Kelani Bridge to Athurugiriya. Costing an estimated cost of Rs. 134.9 billion, it is aimed at reducing the heavy traffic congestion caused by vehicles coming into Colombo via the Southern Expressway and Battaramulla, Kaduwela and Athurugiriya. 

The China Harbour Engineering Corporation (CHEC) has been contracted to complete the project in 36 months. The elevated expressway will start from the New Kelani Bridge and run through Kolonnawa, Rajagiriya, Buthgamuwa, Battaramulla, Koswatte, Pothu Arawa and Hokandara to the Outer Circular Expressway. There will be interchanges in Orugodawatte, Rajagiriya, Koswatte, Hokandara and Dematagoda, connecting with Baseline Road. There will be another interchange in Athurugiriya linking the elevated expressway to the Outer Circular Expressway.

The flyovers at the Kohuwala junction and Getambe junction will be constructed with financial aid from Hungary. 

The flyover in Kohuwala will be contracted at a cost of Rs. 2.6 billion. The overhead bridge will be 217.3 m in length and 9.4 m wide, overarching a four-lane traffic light-controlled road connecting Nugegoda and Kalubowila. The project is envisaged to be completed in 22 months.

The flyover at Getambe junction will be constructed at a cost of Rs. 9.5 billion. It will be 396.7 m in length, with its branch-flyover 285 m long. The width of the flyover will be covered in three segments; the main flyover will be 9.40 m wide, but together with the branch-flyover, the total width will be 12.9 m. The width of the branch-flyover from Kandy to Peradeniya, meanwhile, will be 6.4 m. The project is envisaged to be completed in 28 months.

The flyover at Justice Akbar Mawatha will be 207 m in length and 8.4 m wide. The flyover at Uttarananda Mawatha will be 396 m long and 10.4 m wide. The flyover connecting the two aforementioned flyovers will be 310 m long and 6.9 m wide. The total cost for these three flyovers is estimated at Rs. 5.3 billion. It is planned to be completed within 12 months with Maga Engineering Ltd. contracted to build it.

The flyover across Beira Lake and Slave Island Railway Station connecting Bala Daksha Mawatha and Chittampalam A. Gardner Mawatha will be 360 m in length and 11 m wide. The total construction cost is estimated at Rs. 2.7 billion and Access Engineering PLC has been contracted to complete the project in 12 months.