Bulgarian Govt Plans to Finish 'Hemus' HWY by 2018
The government has set a 2018 deadline to finish the construction of the Hemus highway in northern Bulgaria to connect the capital Sofia and the Black Sea city of Varna.
The announcement was made Monday by the Minister of Regional Development and Public Works Desislava Terzieva, at a national conference focused on good practices in the construction of lots 2, 3 and 4 of the Trakiya highway in southern Bulgaria.
She explained the construction of the first new segment of the long-delayed "Hemus" will start in 2014 and will involve the section between the town of Yablanitsa and the city of Lovech. Terrain studies are already taking place there, according to her.
Terzieva, however, added that the cabinet is committed to build the much needed northern highway, but it will all boil down to sources of financing.
The Minister further listed the completion of "Struma" and "Maritsa" highways and of the express Vidin-Blagoevgrad road among the priorities of the Socialist-endorsed government of Prime Minister, Plamen Oresharski.
Deputy Transport Minister, Petar Kirov, informed an additional EUR 36 M in EU financing for transport will be absorbed by the end of the year to reach 50% absorption of the "Transport" operational program.
The goal, according to him, is to reach 100% in the next two and a half years or BGN 1.96 B.
Kirov said this goal was fully attainable if delays are avoided.
The Deputy Minister stressed that in the next program period the focus will shift to railroads in order to achieve balance in the county's infrastructure. It will include the completion of the railroads to the Greek, Turkish, and Serbian borders, and finishing the modernization of the one connecting the second largest city of Plovdiv and the Black Sea city of Burgas.
Kirov says by 2020, Bulgaria should have 650 km of railroads with trains travelling on them with speeds up to 160 km/h.
Regarding the recently finished "Trakiya" highway, Minister Terzieva informed a committee to monitor the conditions of all roads under warrantees has been formed and measures will be undertaken if violations are established.
She said she was personally in charge of the committee's work.
Over 10 000 people and over 11 060 machines and equipment were used in the construction of "Trakiya" highway, according to Terzieva.
Adapted from Novinite
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