Chenani: Work on India`s longest road
tunnel Friday started with engineers blasting a portion of a hill to clear way for construction of the 9-km long Chenani-Nashri Tunnel in Jammu and Kashmir`s Udhampur district.
Australian company Leighton Welston, renowned for
tunnelling technology, began the project by triggering the
blast this afternoon.
"We have started the work today on this prestigious
project. The twin tunnels which will come on Jammu-Srinagar
national highway is one of the longest road tunnel in Asia and also in India," Managing Director of Leighton Welston, Russell Waug told reporters at the project site here.
The twin tunnels will come up in a period of next five
years at a cost of Rs 2,600 crore, he said, adding that it
will also reduce the length of the highway as well as the
travel time between Srinagar and Jammu.
The two-lane main tunnel will have a diameter of 13.3 m,
while a parallel escape route shall have a diameter of 5 m.
Engineers will use the NATM technique of sequential excavation
and support for executing the project, he said.
The completion of the first section of the tunnel
comprising of all the portal sections represents the key
milestones for the project, he said.
A team of over 800 staff and 200 strong work force, armed
with sophisticated drilling machines, will daily bore around 5
m of the main tunnel and 8 m of the escape route, he said.