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Geographically coordinating at 32.3642°N 77.1330°E, under construction Rohtang Tunnel of Himachal Pradesh state in India would be a major linking source at the Leh-Manali Highway route. This tunnel is going to become a potential construction today for the future generations. It would be best maintained tunnel in the region and is also expected to become a lifeline for road infrastructure in the entire area.
Purpose of Tunnel
Being built under the Rohtang Pass in the Himalayan region’s eastern Pir Panjal range, Rohtang Tunnel is expected to play a pivotal role to make this region’s road infrastructure on the Leh-Manali Highway a fascinating and easy experience. Its proposed 8.8 km length would make this tunnel India’s one of the few longest road tunnels after Chenani-Nashri Tunnel, which is also called Patnitop Tunnel located in the northern side of Udhampur area.
Primary aim behind the start of Rohtang Tunnel’s construction was to reduce the long distance area of approximately 60 kilometers in between Manali and Keylong. Its elevation at 3,100m would definitely popularize it in the Rohtang pass area. As heavy snowfalls are common in this area during wintertime, this pass is expected to remain operational for selected time period in the year. It is therefore expected to welcome ample road traffics while in operation. It is also important because of it being a major source of connecting Ladakh area with the rest side on Manali-Leh axis.
The construction of Rohtang Tunnel started on 28 June 2010. The Border Roads Organization operates it today and still looks after it to give final touches to this proposed tunnel of projected 8.8 km. With its two lanes this tunnel would cater to the needs of large chunk of travellers. By now its operating speed has been kept at 80 km/h. It will maintain the width of 10m.
Although this project had been conceived decades ago in 1983 formal inauguration of work was done on 3 June 2000. By 6th May 2002, the Border Roads Organization was involved for its construction purpose. There was expectation to complete this project by 2010 but it didn’t fruition. Later on its completion date was revised for 2014 but it is still incomplete. Its expected completion date is fixed for 2017 now.
Progress of the Project
As location of Rohtang Tunnel is not precisely under the Rohtang Pass its presence in the western side of the pass would make it notable. Turning left at Palchan its southern links would be Manali at a distance of 10 km. Likewise, its northern end would connect to Manali-Leh highway close by the tiny Teling village.
The future of this project is therefore expected to bring an important resurgence in the region’s locations like Lahaul Valleys, Kyelang (Keylong), Ladakh and Shikunla amongst others through best road infrastructure. The efforts made in this regard would turn this project one of the ultimate ones for easy and regular Leh-Manali road transportation by perfect road connectivity to Ladakh anytime and every time.