WORLD CLASS ROADSIDE AMENITIES ON NATIONAL HIGHWAYS
India has been experiencing a rapid increase in passenger and freight movement on national highways for the past few decades. Roadways provide an arterial network for trade facilitation and movement of goods. In fact, the lifeblood of the economy is reliant on highways. It has become fundamental to combine the facilitation of top-notch infrastructure for Indian Highways along with sufficient facilities to relax and take some time off from travel. The primary objective of the Wayside Amenities is to provide a standardized experience to the highway travellers during their journey. The Wayside Amenities will also aim to improve road safety as adequate resting facilities for road users will provide time to recover from travel fatigue.
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is following a design norm which will target passengers and truck drivers both collectively and individually. The Government will inaugurate three different types of Wayside Amenities, they are:
- Highway Nest (Mini): Highway Toll Plazas will soon have kiosks with facilities such as drinking water, tea/coffee, and packaged food for the convenience of highway travellers. More than 50 Highway Nests (Mini) have already inaugurated on 26th January 2018 across the highway network, on the occasion of the Republic Day.
- Highway Village: The NHAI is in the process of developing entities at 183 locations which will be known as “Highway Village”. Highway Village sites will accommodate restaurants, proper parking space, fuel stations and motels. These entities are being developed to provide adequate rest and refreshment for the commuters and to help in promoting the handloom and handicrafts of local artisans.
- Highway Nest: Many private parties are willing to join hands with the NHAI to develop entities with the name “Highway Nest” on approximately 1000 places across the National Highways Network. These entities will be developed on the private lands by the private parties for which the access will be provided by the NHAI.
“Recognizing the insufficiency of wayside amenities along the highways as we see in developed countries, we have decided to come up with the wayside amenities at every 50 km of length on National Highways, which will be developed through private participation,” said the Honourable Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Shri Nitin Gadkari. The government will also embolden the local farmers and villagers to put up the wayside amenities along the national highways of the nation at every 40 to 50 kilometres to ensure that the local population is also benefited from this move economically. The establishment of wayside amenities will definitely help in making the highway travel more convenient and comfortable.