North-East Delhi’s Signature Bridge received its first central pylon on Thursday and the process of erecting it began in the presence of Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. She had announced the project nine years ago. The bridge, which is pegged as the Capital’s “landmark project”, received its first consignment earlier this month from China. It included pylon bases, which weigh 425 tonnes each. The total weight of the steel pylon structure is 6,500 tonnes.

While the second consignment has reached Kandla Port and is on its way to Delhi, the third consignment is being shipped from Shanghai this month. The remaining two consignments will reach Delhi by the end of this year. The Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation, which is supervising the construction of the bridge, was pulled up by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India in April this year for outsourcing the fabrication work to China.

Specifically, the CAG report had pointed out violations of the terms and conditions of the contract of the project. The contractor got the fabrication job done in China when it has been specified that work should be done only in three Indian fabrication shops specified in the agreement.

The main bridge is 675 metres long, is asymmetrical and cable stayed. It has two approaches. The eastern approach is 1.8 km long and connects the main bridge with the Marginal Bund Road at the Khajuri Khas intersection. It also has a flyover and a ground-level rotary at Khajuri Khas intersection.

The western approach has a flyover on Outer Ring Road, which covers the existing intersections at Timarpur, Nehru Vihar and Wazirabad. The main flyover on the western side has been opened to traffic. The eastern flyover is nearing completion and will be opened to traffic by early next month.

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