Banihal Qazigund Road Tunnel is an 8.5 km road tunnel at elevation of 1,790 m in the Pir Panjal range in the Indian Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir connecting Banihal and Qazigund. It is a double tube tunnel consisting of two parallel tunnels – one for each direction of travel.
Each tunnel is 7 m wide and has two lanes of road. The two tunnels are interconnected by a passage every 500 m for maintenance and emergency evacuation.
Will anything change when the Four Lanes Tunnel is through between Banihal to Qazigund?
Yes, it will reduce the road distance between Banihal and Qazigund by 16 km (10 mile) and make it less prone to avalanches.
The tunnel will have forced ventilation for extracting smoke and stale air and infusing fresh air. It will have state of the art monitoring and control systems for security. It is expected that vehicles will have to pay a toll to use the tunnel.
Construction of this tunnel started in 2011 along with the project to widen NH 44 (which was known as NH 1A before all the national highways were renumbered in the year 2010) to four lanes.