Travel blog: Traversing the Kathmandu-Tarai fast-track

Pratik Rayamajhi (left), Som Moktan (middle) and Pratik Ghimire at Kakadi, Bara.

Pratik Ghimire

Fast track: National pride or another white elephant?

With elections on the cards and with the country staring at a possible economic crisis, it won’t be easy to finance the expressway | Photo: Pratik Rayamajhi/ApEx

Pratik Ghimire

What’s driving up land prices along the fast track?

Some residents of Khokana and Bungamati claim high-profile folks are purchasing properties and deliberately jacking up prices | Photo: Sunita Dangol

Pratik Ghimire

Fast track: Destroying Khokana

In 1996, King Birendra had proposed Khokana as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Today, the village is at risk

Pratik Ghimire

Fast track: Destroyer of civilization?

The expressway’s construction through Bungamati and Khokana will destroy several heritage sites and ancient settlements—and with them a civilization | Photo: Pratik Rayamajhi/ApEx

Pratik Ghimire

Fast track: A whiff of partisan, geopolitical interference

PM Pushpa Kamal Dahal was not in favor of an Indian company getting the mega-project. Dahal then chose the army to complete it. It was a wonderful opportunity for the Maoist chairman to rebuild strain ties with the institution

Pratik Ghimire

Fast track: Army veers off the environment track

The army has felled over 27,000 trees while opening the expressway-track. There are 13 community forests and many national forests in project areas | Photos: Pratik Rayamajhi/ApEx

Pratik Ghimire

What if… the fast track project was completed on time?

Research suggests Kathmandu-Tarai fast track would decrease the country’s fuel consumption by 20 percent. Even with an annual 10 percent cut, the country would cut Rs 20 billion from its fuel bills | Photos: Nepal Army

Pratik Ghimire

Lack of fast track progress raises questions over Nepal...

The 2017 decision to award the fast track project to the army had gotten a favorable response from experts and public alike. Five years later, the army’s role is increasingly coming into question | Photo: RSS

Pratik Ghimire

ApEx Explainer: The what, where and when of the fast...

The process of inviting international bidders for the fast track started after 2011, but the response was tepid. The project was largely seen as light in terms of returns

Kamal Dev Bhattarai

Fast track, off track

An ApEx team visiting many places along the 72.5km-track length spotted multiple problems | Photo: Pratik Rayamajhi/ApEx

Pratik Ghimire

ApEx roundtable on Kathmandu-Tarai fast track

The objective was to understand the many aspects of the project—its current status, its cultural and environmental impacts, and the lessons we have learned from it | Photos: Pratik Rayamajhi/ApEx

Pratik Ghimire

Photo Feature | Tracking the fast track road project

A track opened for the Kathmandu-Tarai fast track by cutting away a hillside in Godavari Municipality, Lalitpur | On the road: Pratik Rayamajhi & Pratik Ghimire/ApEx