“Not even 1% of the waterway is being occupied by our pillars”
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) will submit the technical justification in a fortnight as sought by the State government for the alignment of the Rs.1,815-crore Chennai Port-to-Maduravoyal elevated link road project. The project had recently been put on hold.
The Water Resources Department (WRD) had objected to the alignment of the elevated road project saying that in certain locations, it was on the Cooum itself and not on the bank. The WRD also said this obstructed the free flow of water and hence demanded the project be halted.
Sources in the NHAI said that pillars had to be built at a few spots on the river bed as the alignment crosses from one bank to the other at those points. “The river is a zigzag body. But, our elevated road cannot zigzag. It has to take as smooth a path as possible. The facility has been designed for 80-km speed. L&T has done a study on the aspect of water flow and it shows that there will be a maximum increase of 5 mm at these spots.”
“Not even one per cent of the waterway is being occupied by our pillars. The flow of water gets obstructed at the many bridges on the river; the flow near our pillars is almost double that of the flow in those locations,” the official said.
The removal of encroachments and dredging will also improve water flow in the river, the sources said.