Peshawar-Islamabad Motorway M1 is now Open for Traffic

Posted on November 11, 2007
Filed Under >Owais Mughal, Economy & Development
Total Views: 51091


Owais Mughal

The 155 km long Motorway M1 between Islamabad and Peshawar in now open for traffic in its entirety. The 117 km portion of it got inaugurated on October 30, 2007.

M1‘s construction work was initially started in the year 1993 by a Turkish company Bayindar but it left the work incomplete in 1997. The contract was the re-awarded to a consortium called PMC-JV in 2003.

The speed limit on M1 is 120 kmph and it is completed at a cost of Rupees 16 bn.

M1 has 9 interchanges at Fatehjang, Bhatar, Burhan, Rashaki, Swabi, Chachh (under construction), Charsadda, Northern Bypass and Ring road on N-5. There are 3 major bridges on Haro, Indus and Kabul rivers, 18 flyovers, 27 other bridges, 137 underpasses and 571 culverts. 10 services areas— five on the each side of the motorway— would be provided out of which, four mini service areas at km-4 and km-106 have been completed. Six main service areas at Haro bridge, Indus River and Kabul River will start functioning after some time as they are still under constructions

The proposed Pakistan Motorway project is approximately 3000 km long network of access controlled, signal free highways. With the inauguration of M1, 768 km of this network is now operational. Following is the complete list of motorway sections planned and operational in Pakistan.

M1: Peshawar – Islamabad : 155 km (6 Lane, Access Controlled, Operational)
M2: Islamabad – Lahore: 367 km (6 Lane, Access Controlled, Operational)
M3: Pindi Bhattian – Faisalabad: 53 km (4 Lane, Access Controlled, Operational)
M4: Faisalabad – Multan: 243 km (proposed 4 Lane)
M5: Multan – Dera Ghazi Khan: 65 km (proposed 4 Lane)
M6: Dera Ghazi Khan – Rato Dero: 450 km (proposed 4 Lane)
M7: Rato Dero – Karachi: 303 km (proposed 2 Lane)
M8: Gawadar – Ratodero: 1072 km (under construction, 2 Lane road completed and operational)
M9: Karachi – Hyderabad: 136 km (4 Lane, Access Controlled, Operational, 6 Lanes planned)
M10: Karachi Northern Bypass: 57 km (6 Lane, Access Controlled, Operational)
Shahrah-e-Sanat Lahore- Sialkot: 101 km (under construction)
TOTAL : 3002 km

Sunset Over M1

Following photo was taken on October 4, 2008 and is courtesy of Anjum Riaz at APP. It shows sunset on M1.

Related ATP Posts:

1. Traveling on the N5: Part I
2. Traveling on the N5: Part II
3. Traveling on the N5: Part III

52 Comments on “Peshawar-Islamabad Motorway M1 is now Open for Traffic”

  1. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 11th, 2007 2:36 am

    Owais Nughal,

    Good news, atlast highways have started
    shortening the ‘distances ‘ between Pakistanis
    in Pakistan.

    One can see that they are well equiped, hope
    will remain, and the Pakistanis will use it

    Saw yesterday, Imran Khan’s clandestine
    interview in which he disclosed the hight of
    corruption in road construction, horrified
    with the figures 1 km = 50.000 Rupees
    (Imran’s Private ) 1 km = 28.lakhs by CDA

    No, !! am I dreaming ????

  2. Asma says:
    November 11th, 2007 5:01 am

    And the landscapes alongside are far catchy than M2.

    BTW, its advisable not to stop your car if anyone asks. That area has a bad rapport for car thefts and kidnappings :\

  3. JayJay says:
    November 11th, 2007 6:04 am

    Now one can reach Kissa-Khwani Bazaar for lunch, after having their breakfast in Anarkali. The motorway network will contribute in increasing economic activity in the country. However, to exploit the true potential of our roads and the country

  4. Pakistan Zinda Baad says:
    November 11th, 2007 9:19 am

    Thats awesome. I am just waiting for the day when all sections from Peshawar down to Karachi are fully complete and functional and I could drive all over it. Fantastic. Probably I will have to wait for another 15 to 20 years before this dream hopefully comes true. I see true progress behind this project and I am psyched. Our motorway is better than many abroad. Pakistan Zinda Baad. Lets hope that we will have more mega projects and futuristic vision for our country.

  5. Pervaiz Munir Alvi says:
    November 11th, 2007 10:15 am

    As usual you have your own angle for every thing happening inside Pakistan. Of course international trade is a welcome proposal. But no international cooperation could happen in vacuum. Other than paying puny transit fee what else is that India would be willing to do in return for Pakistan for the transit facilities provided by the later. Would she be willing remove her one million strong armed forces posted along Pakistani border. Would she give Kashmiris their right to self-determination. Would she stop her ‘activities’ at Pakistan’s western border. Indian heavy covert presence in Jalalabad, Kandahar and Zahedan goes against the spirit of your proposals of “Amritsar-Jalalabad”, and, “Zahedan-Delhi” open international traffic.

  6. libertarian says:
    November 11th, 2007 10:32 am

    Other than paying puny transit fee what else is that India would be willing to do in return for Pakistan for the transit facilities provided by the later. Would she be willing remove her one million strong armed forces posted along Pakistani border.
    Dude, you’re more obsessed with India’s (supposed) obsession with Pakistan than your own welfare. You’re living in days past. The world has moved on. If you haven’t noticed, Pakistan does not need the Indian one million string armed forces or the spooks in Zahedan, Balochistan etc. to create problems for it. It’s doing that pretty successfully all by itself!

  7. Pervaiz Munir Alvi says:
    November 11th, 2007 10:33 am

    I just had the opportunity to travel on this new motorway section from Islamabad to Hasan Abdal. It is just awesome and invigorating ride. The mountain ridges along the way are breathtaking. My curiosity took me under the new Indus Motorway Bridge via Attock-Ghazi back roads. At this point the river is very wide and the white colored high bridge against the blue and gray backdrop is a sight to be seen. From the old Attock Bridge to this new Motorway Bridge is a long way coming. Thank you for this timely post.

  8. Aamir Ali says:
    November 11th, 2007 11:00 am

    Alhamdullilah! Finally after 14 years this highway is complete. It should have never taken so long but corruption, poor management and litigation made it so, but thank God it is now complete.

    Congratulations to my Pakistani brethren.

  9. Adam Insaan says:
    November 11th, 2007 11:19 am

    I am looking forward to be taking this path…
    now without kidney-stone- and gallbladder-stone threatening to accompany the stones on the sidepaths….

    Mubarique to all users of cars from Audi Q to “three-wheeled-Vespers”.

  10. Shehzad Ahmed Mir says:
    November 11th, 2007 11:45 am

    Motorway is an amazing achievement. Thanks to Nawaz Sharif who initiated it despite major opposition. Now the M-1, M-2 and M-3 has set the standard for road network & transport quality throughout Pakistan. Thanks also to President Musharraf for continuing this vision. I cannot wait for the day when I would be able to drive from Islamabad to Karachi on the Motorway. Leave in the morning and by nightfall, you’d be in Karachi enjoying the Arabian Sea breeze. Indeed a remarkable achievement for Pakistan. Motorway is indeed a tribute to ALL Pakistanis.

  11. Neena says:
    November 11th, 2007 12:00 pm

    I can’t helped to notice but Quetta is left out in this Motorway scheme. Can anyone explain it why is that?

  12. Anwar says:
    November 11th, 2007 1:20 pm

    Good news. It is also important to develop railroad links for trade and commerce. These highways are sufficient only for limited heavy loading. For example, the NLC trucks created deep and dangerous tire tracks on GT road past Attock…

  13. Aadil says:
    November 12th, 2007 1:23 am

    Yes, my long long wait to commute through M1 is now over and it saves me at least 30 minutes to go to Mardan from Islamabad. It is a great feeling driving on the motorway along the breath taking landscape where there are brick factories, mountain ridges, katchi abadis and the lonesome trees nailing the vast terrains of uncultivated lands.

  14. Usman Akram says:
    November 12th, 2007 6:19 am

    Glad to see another phase of Motorway getting completed.
    I travell alot in UK and Pakistan’s Motorways are as good as Britian’s.
    It took britian 25 years to complete its motorways and it is smaller country then pakistan, Pakistan has come so far 14 years with delays due to Benazir and Nawaz governemnt’s policies and foreign investors/contractors running away but PML-Q has made this dream come true by making it a priority.

    The only difference is now Britian charges

  15. Imran says:
    November 12th, 2007 10:53 am

    Thanks to the National Highway System, it is now possible to travel from Lahore to Peshawar without seeing anything. From this motoroway, Punjab to Peshawar is all steel guardrails and plastic signs, and every place looks and feels and sounds and smells like every other place, and no life is allowed near motoway, its against the law.

  16. kashif Gujjar says:
    November 20th, 2007 1:49 am

    Congratulations to all from Sarhad Province who are getting benefit from this road….Balochi the most deprived is still waiting to have one like this…..I have travelled a lot through pakistan and found motorway better option….Although one has to pay a lot in form of Toll Plaza Fee but at leas you are getting service against payment….There is lot of hazzle in travelling through other National Highway stopping regularly and paying this Toll Fee…Govt Needs to review it….Interestingly on Lahore-Shekhupura-Faisalabad Road this Toll Fee is very high the reason being is that this road is built by a private company on BOT contract…

  17. khadim Ch( says:
    November 20th, 2007 2:05 am

    Neena not only Quetta but all Balochistan is ignored in this scheme..Gawadar Ratodaro…..Ratodaro….Karachi is last in plan…..I think we need to explore Balochist more from Tourism point of view….which has lot yet to be discovered…All pakistani should have equal share…I would like now Gawadar Ratodairo to be open…linking Balochistan with other provinces….this would really increase harmony among provinces and people will come close……..Still waiting rail links from Gawadar to be announced that would help boost economic activities with inaguration of Gawadar Port

  18. Fouzia says:
    November 20th, 2007 2:52 am

    I am getting exciting after reading all aboce kashif you really made a point about Toll Fee……Govt should think about it……I am planning to travell on it but couldnt do so due to Taliban factor in SWAT….For God sake pls stop it….Can any one can come up with more pics of landscap around it…

  19. Owais Mughal says:
    November 21st, 2007 11:16 pm

    @ Khadim Ch Saheb and Neena Sahiba.

    I don’t know why Quetta was left out of Motorways. May be Bolan pass proved to be a big obstacle.

    Out of proposed 3000 km of motorways, almost 1/3rd (~30%) i.e. 950km fall in Balochistan. Therefore i don’t think the province was left out. 95% of Ratodero-Gwadar section is in Balochistan. Add to this the 700 km of now functional world class Coastal highway so Balochistan is in no way a loser when it comes to highways/motorways.

    I’ve read somewhere that a two-lane road from Ratodero-Gawadar is already functional which will ultimately become the motorway.

  20. khadim Ch says:
    November 23rd, 2007 3:11 am

    Owais thanks for the information….I have travelled through Costal Highway and scenes around are really fantastic……Wish Raetodero-Gawadar to be functional soon…so that we can see more of BALOCHISTAN as well……more Motorway and Higway Police needs to be deployed there to make the journey safe…which can be dangerous due to miscreants activities….

  21. Shakil says:
    November 26th, 2007 6:51 am

    excellent for Pakistan and paksitanis, its way to go, reduce the time and distance between all of us. build more as we need more and a well connected road network. congrats to all Pakistanis

  22. Aqil Khan says:
    December 24th, 2007 12:35 am

    1. Space between the M-1 is not enough to save danger in case of accident and uncontroled car can roll over the otherside of the road. It is very dangrous, the partition should more higher that the other car could be seen by each side, it is required to add some more clay or iron bars high 3 meters in the partition would be safer and other car would not be able to crosse or jump in case of accident.

    M-1 interchange near peshawr on GT road and ring road two bridges are underconstruction, is a waist of public money and incompetency of engeers or consultent. There was no need to waist money on that bridges. The interchange can be builted about 3 km away from Peshawar GT. road and ring without having bridges and the traffice could easily reached to there destination. liek the Interchange has been construted on Rashakik to access Mardan.

  23. Asim Kaleem says:
    December 24th, 2007 6:28 am

    A good news after a long time. There must be a link between gawadar to peshawa via quetta so completing a grid of roads connecting lahore, islamabad, karachi, gawadr, quetta and peshawar. Any such plans of the Govt…….???

  24. Owais Mughal says:
    January 15th, 2008 11:48 pm

    A photo of Peshawar Toll Plaza on M1 here

  25. Owais Mughal says:
    February 25th, 2008 11:35 am

    The Peshawar interchange on M1 is still under construction (Feb 25, 2008).

  26. adnan says:
    March 25th, 2008 5:23 am
  27. Aamir khan says:
    June 3rd, 2008 11:24 pm

    it is a ver good and easy way for all humen.

  28. momers says:
    June 12th, 2008 3:54 am

    In light of the grievances of the baluchi ppl…
    I just noticed that no motorway leads to Quetta…
    Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad, all the capitals are connected…but not Quetta.

    It is after all a part of the country and what better to bridge the divide by building a super duper nice highway on which u dont have to think twice before traveling?

  29. abdul jabbar khan says:
    July 3rd, 2008 7:53 am

    govt of pakistan should now launch project for the beterment of power generation and motorway projects are also good

  30. Owais Mughal says:
    July 18th, 2008 9:02 pm

    Four latest photos of M1 added to the post. They are above the black background map of Pakistan Motorway Network

  31. vahila says:
    July 21st, 2008 9:46 am

    please add our website

  32. Owais Mughal says:
    August 28th, 2008 11:54 pm

    Following photo appears in yesterday’s (Aug 27, 2008)’ Dawn and shows still incomplete Chamkani interchange on M1 at Peshawar

  33. qazi khalid ali says:
    October 3rd, 2008 6:40 pm

    I agree with momers’ comment about Quetta not being on the proposed motorway network. The people, politicians, provincial and central governments must work for the betterment of the entire country. If a motorway links Quetta to Peshawar in the North and another one joining Quetta to M8 near Khuzdar would be absolutely wonderful for the entire western Pakistan and Baluchistan. Once communication network is established all other aspects of development will follow suit.

  34. Owais Mughal says:
    October 4th, 2008 10:50 pm

    The last photo of the post showing sunset over M1 is added today. The photo was taken on October 4, 2008

  35. QASIM says:
    November 14th, 2008 12:26 pm


  36. Owais Mughal says:
    December 21st, 2008 12:25 am

    The fencing done on both sides of M1 from from Peshawar to Swabi has been stolen by miscreants. This has made M1 dangerous in this section b/c wandering animals are a serious hazard for high speed traffic on M1. A Dawn update below:

    SWABI: Fencing of motorway discussed

    By Our Correspondent

    SWABI, Dec 20: Talks are underway to either construct a boundary-wall or re-erect fences on both sides of the Islamabad-Peshawar Motorway as the installed fences had been taken away by people in various areas from Peshawar to Swabi.

    The inspector-general National Highway Authority and Motorway, and high-raking police officials of the NWFP discussed the issue how to jointly tackle the problem and ensure safe journey on the road, sources told Dawn here on Saturday.

    Without fences, the motorway had become extremely unsafe for journey. The officials of the Motorway and NWFP police had already discussed the issue how theft of the fence could be prevented. It had become difficult for the police to identify the people who were involved in the crime.

    However, the sources said that the officials admitted that it was very difficult to deploy police force to protect the fence from Peshawar to Swabi, but still they wanted to work out a plan for making journey safe for the travellers.

    The sources said that theft cases were only reported from Peshawar to Swabi region while the remaining Islamabad-Peshawar Motorway was safe for journey.

    The sudden turn up of wild animals on the road could lead to fateful accidents and there was a dire need to take precautionary measures in this regard, they added.

  37. asif khan says:
    January 8th, 2009 5:14 am

    hello,hi,dear readers sallam !
    as for as motorway is concerned an excellent work done by genral pm,and shaukat aziz.though there was to much commisiong in that but it is completed now its our responsibility that we to look after that,some work is left insh that will also be completed.the main problem inpakistan is of rules,n0 on knows rules of driving and mp use to fine them.currently i am living in uk here pakistani respect the rule more than the british just bcoz of fear of deporting and etc,so please learn a better driving here in pakistan u will not be even failed here in test bcoz pakistani roads and traffics…….haha ha aha …..

  38. Owais Mughal says:
    March 20th, 2009 5:34 pm

    The work on Chamkani interchange on M1 is currently stopped. The photos of the incomplete bridge appear at APP today. See here and here.

  39. April 2nd, 2009 11:49 am

    I have worked on M1, we worked hard and constructed it properly, it is very easy way, comfortable

  40. Aamir Ali says:
    April 2nd, 2009 12:51 pm

    @Tahseen Marwat

    Appreciate your hard work in building this national asset for Pakistan.

  41. maqsood elahi says:
    May 14th, 2009 11:34 am


    bros its the golden era work of our people that we make motorway its not just for our today use but its a gift from our side for our comining genaration so we have to take care of it .

  42. uzma malik says:
    May 17th, 2009 6:02 am

    Great to see, its more than travelling on this road, i have heard about Gwadar Ratodero motorway is operational now. can you pls post the same for us for this one too.

    we will be really thankfull.

  43. Owais Mughal says:
    May 19th, 2009 11:20 am


    Ratto Dero-Khuzdar-Gawadar Motorway M8 is to date ~60% done and it is not open for general traffic yet.

  44. shakeel says:
    October 21st, 2009 7:20 am

    Thanks and nice pictures

    However, one can note that there no motoway lights so complete dark in the nights. Should have done the complete job IMO.

  45. PAKPATRIOTIC says:
    January 23rd, 2010 8:30 am

    i have always wished for developed pakistan and now i think that we are on i would encourage every paki to come forward and play their role..god bless you

  46. Jahan-deeda says:
    January 23rd, 2010 1:08 pm

    I normally travel on M-1 ( Islamabad-Peshawar) & did so, again, only today. but I find my countrymen very anxious to rip-off the gauze-wire protective walls installed with great difficulty by the NHA; which makes it unsafe for motorists/others. I only hope that the well-being of our nation comes 1st & foremost, before they repeat that act.

  47. April 15th, 2010 1:09 am

    Assalam0alaikum guys… this is surely a very positive and the most creative way to promote Our Motherland “Pakistan” I highly appreciate it !

    i have also traveled through motorways M2: Islamabad – Lahore: 367 km (6 Lane, Access Controlled, Operational)
    You guys might find it interesting …. :)

  48. Adnan Ali says:
    July 30th, 2010 3:26 am

    salam dear sir..
    i hav 2 knw abt the motorway m1.. either its closed today or opened now..
    plz send me ur toll plaza contact number for assistance..

  49. farrukh raza says:
    September 28th, 2010 2:46 am

    very very great thinking.very appreciable work 4rm govt of Pakistan.i hope that this work will save Pakistan 4rm any kind of disaster and Pakistan will be on the way to develop. than x
    farrukh raza

  50. Wasim says:
    January 15th, 2011 3:05 pm

    Motorway M8 is now Open for Traffic As Per NHA…..

    Owais pls comment and publish the same…..

  51. Khalil says:
    July 26th, 2011 6:25 pm

    I’ve recently traveled on this road, really a good way to reach northern areas.

  52. sagar kumar says:
    August 11th, 2011 4:16 am

    hey, i am from india. m-1 really looks nice i have lots of questions to ask and i know to fill my thirst i have to visit there….so well

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