The State Highways Department will go for a re-tender within a week for the construction of a bridge in Adyar and at Moolakadai junction.

It will be the fourth call for the project to construct a three-lane facility across the Adyar river. The bridge will be constructed between the Thiru Vi.Ka. bridge and the old bridge, which is not in use.

As regards the bridge at the Moolakadai junction on Grand Northern Trunk Road, it will be for the third time that the department will be floating a tender.

The time taken to finalise the construction contract is on account of the high rates quoted by the contractors in response to the previous tenders.

The contractors, in turn, have cited a shortage of workforce as the reason for quoting high.

Sources in the department said it was increasingly becoming difficult to get labourers for such infrastructure projects.

While the schedule of rates stipulates that the labour charge is about Rs.130 daily, workers demand as much as Rs.300 to Rs.350 as daily wages.

Workers from other States have also begun demanding a pay hike.

Though the prices of construction materials have come down, the contractors quote 15 to 25 per cent more than the estimated value of the project apprehending that the prices may shoot up in future, sources said.

The government can, however, sanction only up to 10 per cent more than the project estimate, said sources in the department. The Rs.13-crore bridge across the Adyar river will be 12 m wide and 300 m long.

Though the work was expected to start two months ago, problems with contractors led to the delay.

Officials said that about 30,000 passenger car units use Thiru-Vi-Ka bridge during rush hour.

The construction of an additional bridge in two years would help reduce the congestion.

The department has also planned to redesign the much awaited bridge at the Moolakadai junction from two columns to a single-column facility as it would not demand any shifting of utility service.

The Rs.49.55-crore bridge would be 17.2 metre wide and 875 metre wide.

The flyover to come up at the Thirumangalam junction would also be constructed with a similar design for which the tender would be floated next month, the sources said.

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