Length of domestic highways to top 5,000 km by 2020
SEJONG, July 13 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will increase the length of domestic highways to over 5,000 kilometers over the next four years to ensure faster and safer travel and ease traffic congestion, the government said Wednesday.
The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport unveiled the draft of the comprehensive road plan that calls for extending the combined length of nationwide highways from the current 4,193 km to 5,131 km by 2020.
Once the 73.7 trillion-won (US$64.2 billion) project is completed, the road construction plan will allow 96 percent of the nation's over-50 million population to reach expressways within 30 minutes from their homes, the ministry explained.
The ministry also plans to expand four-lane national highways, as well as side and alternative roads, to reduce traffic congestion in major areas.
In addition, the plan calls for establishing the "smart toll system" on all highways by 2020, by installing an automated system to acknowledge car license plates to collect tolls.
The ministry said it will collect opinions from related agencies and provincial governments on the draft and confirm the plan within the next month.
This photo filed on May 6, 2016, shows a highway toll gate on a road to Seoul. (Yonhap)