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The Prime Minister of Georgia opened a 27 km long section of the new main road of Rikoti

28 October, 2023

The Prime Minister of Georgia, Irakli Gharibashvili, opened a 27 km long section of the new main road of Rikoti.

Khevi-Shorapani 4-lane, 27 km section includes 65 bridges and 38 tunnels.

The event was attended by Zviad Shalamberidze, the State Representative of Imereti, representatives of the executive and legislative authorities, as well as the diplomatic corps and the business sector.
The new section will reduce the travel distance on Rikoti by 8 km, and travel time by 25 minutes. It will connect sections of the high-speed highway already built in eastern and western Georgia.

"Welcome, dear friends, I greet the esteemed ambassadors, members of the parliament and government, business representatives. First of all, I want to tell you that I am very glad and happy to participate in the opening ceremony of such an important and large-scale project. We all know very well how important the construction of highways and roads is for the development of our country, especially the construction of the East-West highway. As of today, 261 km of highways are open, of which 193 km of highways were built and opened during our government. The most difficult, challenging section was the Rikoti section, which was considered - and still is - one of the most difficult and challenging sections, but you look at the construction of a 4-lane expressway and, of course, the process continues. Today we inaugurated a new 27 km, 4-lane highway that includes 65 bridges and 38 tunnels. I would also like to mention that, of course, the opening of this new road will make it easier for our citizens to move. Rikoti highway will be 52 km in total, 97 bridges and 51 tunnels are under construction. As of today, 48 tunnels have already been cut and 83 bridges have been built. These are grandiose works, the largest project. It can be safely said that in terms of such a scale, complexity, solution, such a similar project has not been implemented in the reality of our country" - said the Prime Minister.

"Today, the most important part of the section of Rikoti was opened. 60% of the cargo turnover of the entire country takes place on this road, and it actually creates new opportunities for our country and especially for Imereti. The new road allows for an increase in freight traffic, and the movement of passengers will be much safer than before on the Ricoti section. It can be said that Imereti region and Kutaisi will be even closer to Tbilisi and for our fellow citizens and tourists going to Western Georgia or Kutaisi international airport, it will be more comfortable to travel," Zviad Shalamberidze told the media.

In total, 52 km of roads, 97 bridges and 51 tunnels are being built within the framework of the construction of the Rikoti highway. To date, 48 tunnels have already been cut, and 83 bridges have already been built. Construction works are continuing intensively and the project will be completed in 2024.

The new 27-km, 4-lane section of the Ricoti main road starts at Khevi village of Kharagauli municipality and ends at Shorapani township of Zestafoni municipality.
The new road takes into account all modern road safety standards, including an external lighting system.

The construction of the Ricoti pass section is divided into 4 sections: Chumateleti-Khevi, Khevi-Ubisa, Ubisa-Shorapani and Shorapani-Argveta sections.

Within the framework of the project, special spaces, the so-called Shopping areas, where the population will be able to sell their products under the conditions of proper infrastructure and road safety.
More than 10,000 people were employed in the construction of the Rikoti highway, of which more than 70% are Georgian citizens.

The construction is being carried out with the support of international financial institutions - European Investment Bank (EIB), World Bank (WB) and Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The total cost of construction works is up to 2.6 billion GEL, and the completion of the project is planned in 2024.

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