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* Segment of outer circular highway around Sri Lankan capital to be opened next month
Mon, Feb 10, 2014, 02:28 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Feb 10, Colombo: Construction of the Kottawa to Kaduwela section of the Outer Circular Highway (OCH) around Sri Lanka's capital city of Colombo from will be completed soon and the expressway will be opened for public next month.

Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa on Saturday inspected the 11-kilometer long Kottawa-Kaduwela segment of the OCH which is located in the Colombo Metropolitan Region and passes through Colombo and Gampaha Districts.

The OCH runs around 20 km away from the city center of Colombo, connecting radial routes and has a total length of 29.2 kilometers.

The northern end of the highway is located at Kerawalapitiya on Colombo-Katunayake Expressway and the southern end is located at Kottawa on Colombo-Ratnapura-Wellawaya-Batticaloa road where Southern Expressway meets OCH.

It is developed as a 4-lane Highway with provision for future expansion to 6-lanes. The design speed of the Highway is 100 kmph.

Kottawa-Kaduwela segment is the Phase 1 of the project. In phase 8.9 kilometer segment from Kaduwela to Kadawata will be completed and Phase 3 will complete the 9.3 kilometer section from Kadawata to Kerawalapitiya.

The OCH is expected to minimize traffic congestion and encourage development away from the highly populated urban areas in the Western province. It will provide an effective bypass for North-South bound traffic and to reduce through-traffic in the city of Colombo.

This expressway is the third of its kind, according to Minister Rajapaksa who also said that by the middle of the year the Kaduwela-Galle and Galle-Matara Express would be built. Thereafter it would become one expressway from Katunayake to Matara passing the Gampaha, Colombo, Kalutara and Galle Districts.

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