NLC begins work on Gilgit-Shandur road
ISLAMABAD: The National Logistics Cell (NLC) has started work on one of the most important road projects in the northern regions of Pakistan which would serve as an alternative to the strategic Karakoram Highway in addition to linking the pristine valleys of the region.
The CPEC standard route will prove to be a game-changer for Pakistan’s growing tourism industry, bringing a marked improvement in the standard of living for the people of Gilgit-Baltistan.
NLC will construct a 76 kilometer stretch of the Gilgit – Shandur road in a challenging environment including the area’s inaccessibility, high altitude, inhospitable weather conditions and steep mountain formations.
The NLC has already mobilized machinery, plant and equipment in addition to establishing a camp with the necessary modern engineering facilities.
Work began at the Shandur end of the project with the aim of easing tourists who thronged the area during the annual festival.
What makes the project a daunting engineering task is the short weather window to undertake the construction work.
The threat of landslides and boulders weighs heavily during construction work, along with heavy snowfall and heavy rain.
Located over 12,500 feet above sea level, the weather opens up for just four months a year.
The road has been upgraded from a provincial highway to a national highway, which will put these remote valleys on par with other developed areas of Gilgit-Baltistan. Travel time between Gilgit and Shandur Valley will be reduced from 7 hours to just 4 hours.