The government is exploring the possibility of beautifying the surroundings of Mumbai-Goa national highway along the seacoast on the lines of the road linking Los Angeles and San Francisco in the United States, Union Minister, Nitin Gadkari said. The minister said these while inaugurating the 77th annual session of the Indian Roads Congress. Appreciating the way tourist spots have been developed along the seashore between the two US cities, including hotels and motels, the minister noted the Centre is also in the process of promoting road-side amenities. The minister said he has asked the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) to prepare a detailed project report on whether the Mumbai-Goa road can be developed on the lines of Los Angeles-San Francisco road. Mr. Gadkari said his ministry has finalized an estimate to construct 2,000 Railway overbridges, and he favoured “pre-cast” centres in districts to undertake such works. He said 35,000 kms of roads would be upgraded as national highways soon. Gadkari also said 1300 spots have been identified in the country for providing road-side amenities –like hotels, motels, petrol bunks and helipads — which would offer tremendous employment opportunities for locals, and 70 tenders have already been floated in this regard. Government also plans to come out with a mechanism by which engineering graduates — particularly diploma-holders and those from polytechnics — get jobs in the area of bridge maintenance and other minor works so that they also become contractors, he added.