The ground-breaking ceremony of the Yellow Line Bus Rapid Transit (CRT) corridor, which will run from Korangi with Numaish, will be performed in December.
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said this on Friday in his meeting with World Bank (WB) Operations Manager Gailius Braugelis.
The CM and the WB operations manager discussed all the WB-funded projects in Sindh, particularly the Rs2 billion Sindh Barrages Improvement project, Modernisation of Urban Property Tax and Karachi Mobility project under which the Yellow Line BRT would be constructed.
The Karachi Mobility project was approved for Rs6 billion with the objective to improve urban mobility, accessibility and road safety in Karachi through development of a mass transit infrastructure.
It includes the construction of 22 kilometre-long Yellow Line BRT corridor with drainage infrastructure, stations, terminals and depot.
The CM said that the BRT would improve the connectivity of Korangi’s residential and industrial areas with the commercial centres of the city in District South. He told the donor agency’s representative that the procurement consultant had issued draft inspection reports on which the Sindh Mass Transit Authority would submit a response soon.
Shah also stressed in the meeting the need for enhancing the scope of the Sindh Barrage Improvement Project so that a feasibility study for the new Sukkur Barrage could be undertaken.
The Sindh Barrage Improvement Project has been launched for Rs16.6 billion in June 2018 and is likely to be closed in June 2030. The project includes rehabilitation, effective operation and management of the Sukkur Barrage.
Sindh Irrigation Minister Jam Khan Shoro informed the meeting said that 60 per cent physical progress in different components of the project had been achieved.
To this, the CM said that his government was planning to construct a new barrage to replace the old Sukkur Barrage, which is the biggest barrage in the country. He urged the donor agency to support the provincial government in preparation of a feasibility report for the new barrage, which would include its exact location.
The WB official assured Shah that he would involve the technical team of the bank to help the provincial government undertake the task. To improve the reliability and safety of the Guddu Barrage, a project worth Rs2 billion was launched in August 2015, which is scheduled to be completed in December 2021.
The irrigation minister told the meeting that the overall physical progress of the rehabilitation and operational work had been 50 per per cent. The CM said that certain reasons, including law and order situation in the area, low water levels in the Indus River and high-level flood season, had caused delay in the execution of the project. He urged the WB representative to provide a four-year extension to the project till December 2026.
The donor agency’s official suggested to the provincial government to file a formal request for the extension of the project. Shah directed Shoro to hold a separate meeting with the WB operations manager on Monday to finalise the extension of the Guddu Barrage project.
Discussing the modernisation of the urban property tax system, Shah said that he had already decided to hand over the collection of property tax to the local bodies in the city.
He added that a fresh survey would be conducted by the excise and taxation department and the local bodies’ taxation units would be provided appropriate training so that they could collect the tax on their own. The project has been launched and its physical progress has so far been 15 per cent.
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