October 30, 2007
The M1 motorway made its debut in northwestern Pakistan. This east-west highway was officially inaugurated by Syed Pervez Musharraf, the president of Pakistan from 2001 to 2008. The 96-mile (155-kilometer) M1 motorway connects the city of Peshawar (capital of the province of Khyber Pakhtunkwa) with the metropolitan area encompassing the cities of Islamabad (Pakistan’s national capital) and Rawalpindi (more widely known as Pindi) in the province of Punjab.
While plans for creating the M1 motorway had been under development as far back as 1993, the actual construction of the highway did not begin until after Musharraf took over as president. He made this project a higher-than-before priority for Pakistan’s federal government.
The motorways of Pakistan are maintained and operated by the country’s National Highway Authority, and the M1 motorway was one of the first routes to be completed in the network of multiple-lane, controlled-access highways. (The first part of this network to be completed was the north-south M2 motorway, which opened in 1997 entirely within the province of Punjab and links the Islamabad-Rawalpindi area with the city of Lahore.) At this time, a total of 1,131 miles (1,820 kilometers) of Pakistan’s motorways have been opened for traffic while 1,520 miles (2,446 kilometers) are still under construction.
Additional information on Pakistan’s transportation system, including its motorways, is available at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transport_in_Pakistan.