Neten Dorji | Trashigang

Widening and blacktopping work along Trashigang-Samdrupjongkhar is expected to be completed by early 2022.

Project DANTAK officials said that most of the work along the 180km stretch was completed. Widening and blacktopping of 121km has been completed, which took more than 13 years.

The project, which began in 2007, was supposed to be completed by 2017.

Project DANTAK officials say that difficult terrain, weather conditions, and shortage of manpower were some of the major problems.

“The lack of construction materials and equipment led to the project delay,” said an official based in the Thimphu.

Shortage of labour due to travel restriction was a major problem that led to the project delay, said an official.

Project DANTAK has registered with Build Bhutan Project and approached various agencies for the continuation of the widening work.  “We also advertised and increased daily wages to attract local workers,” an official said.

Project DANTAK officials recently met with Bhutanese contractors. “We would be happy if more Bhutanese contractors and local people come forward to work with us to complete the project fast,” the official said.

“This project has been going on for a very long time,” said a driver. “It has been more than 14 years since DANTAK took over the widening work.”

The road is risky, he added, especially during monsoon.