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Korea to study Sri Lanka’s longest tunnel to ease Kandy congestion

ECONOMYNEXT – Export-Import Bank of Korea and Sri Lanka’s Road Development Authority is to study the construction of what could be the island’s longest tunnel to carry through traffic and ease congestion in the hill capital of Kandy.

This feasibility study will be taken up by a team of Korean technical specialists with a grant from the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF), managed by the Korea Eximbank.

"If constructed, this tunnel will be the longest in Sri Lanka and, the country is expected to gain significant transfer of advanced technology in tunnel construction from Korea," Korea’s embassy in Colombo said in a statement.

"This feasibility study will identify opportunities to improve road accessibility to and from the Kandy city and would allow for sharing Korea’s experience in tackling traffic congestion and road connectivity, especially in cities of historical significance and those challenged by geographical and environmental peculiarities."

Narrow access routes, hilly terrain and being located in an environmentally and historically sensitive area severely restricts a smooth traffic flow in and out, as well as within the Kandy city, the statement said.

There were more than 45 or more schools located within Kandy’s central business district which drew about 1,000 vans and a further mix of 10,000 private cars, tuk-tuks and motorcycles carrying students each day.

In addition east and west-bound traffic caused sever congestion in Kandy.

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