Driving on the new Yamuna Expressway (formerly known as Taj Expressway), which connects Delhi with Agra, is a delight. It took around 47 months and Rs 13,300 crores (US$ 2.4 billion) to build it. The largest concrete corridor, which is built to international standards, is a 165-km access controlled road - currently with 6-lanes extendable to 8 lanes. The new Expressway reduces travel time between the two cities by half to almost two hours and a half.
With CCTVs installed every five kilometres to check over-speeding and rash driving, numerous SOS booths and a highway patrol at every 25 kilometres, the Yamuna Expressway sets a new benchmark for highway safety in the country. It comprises rest rooms after every toll plaza, 180 culverts, 70 vehicular underpasses, 35 underpasses, 1 railway bridge, 1 major bridge and 68 cart track crossings.
With the government allowing its people to enjoy the new experience for free for few days till the Independence Day on August 15th, Agra was recently inundated with visitors from Delhi. In the months to come, the connectivity is only likely to boost tourism, providing the extra fillip to expand the infrastructure network.