Highway Plan May Force Hundreds to Move

The Phnom Penh Municipality is trying to decide what to do about a $5 million road project that could force hundreds of families to move, officials said.

The project involves the expansion of 9 km of road connecting Phnom Penh University to Na­tional Road 5 in Russei Keo district. The question of what to do with the homes of hundreds of families in the proposed road’s path has not been settled.

“My company is waiting for the problem to be settled before we start work,” said Chheng Sowan­dy, coordinator of the Phnom Penh Highway Company.

The company sent a letter to the municipality last week asking them to help solve the problem, said Sok Lakana, deputy chief of the municipal cabinet.

Technical experts from Public Works are to examine the area and offer proposals this week, a ministry official said.

The road project was first approved in 1996 but was put on hold because of technical problems with the original plans, Chheng Sowandy said.

Construc­tion was subsequently  further delayed by fighting in the capital in the summer of July 1997.

The municipality is considering collecting tolls from drivers using the road to help pay for the project, Sok Lakana said.



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