One of the Capital’s busiest junctions for vehicular and pedestrian traffic will see Delhi’s longest pedestrian foot over-bridge (FOB), the ITO Skywalk, begin materialising around next week, sources said.
The Public Works Department (PWD) has finalised and awarded the tender for construction of the ₹41 crore project. The 523-metre Skywalk will be equipped with lifts and escalators.
It will connect Tilak Marg, Sikandra Road, Mathura Road and Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg with the ITO metro station and the Delhi High Court through sturdy metallic ramps and overhead canopies.
Construction of the Skywalk will be finished within six months of commencement of construction, said a senior government official.
“There are a few modalities related to land acquisition for the project that are in the process of being worked out. Once that is done, construction work will begin,” said the official.
“The project is expected to be completed within six months and will benefit an estimated one lakh citizens, including employees of as many as 25 office complexes in the area, who compose the daily footfall of pedestrians at the junction,” said the official.
Sources said that clearances from the Archaeological Survey of India, the Indian Railways and the New Delhi Municipal Council are in the process of being procured.
After a recent directive by the NITI Aayog, which allowed bidders of government construction projects to suggest the best design for the project, the cost of the Skywalk project had seen a reduction of around ₹17 crore.
Bidders were encouraged to prepare “innovative and cost-effective” concept designs that were “unique, highly functional and aesthetic” in an open design competition. According to the official, bids were called in July 2015 and saw as many as 20 firms participating in the competition.
Out of these, the official said, five were selected for second stage evaluation in November 2015. Ultimately one firm was selected and given the go-ahead for construction last week.
According to the official, the initial cost of the project was pegged around ₹59 crore, but the estimate was recast and first brought down to a little over ₹44 crore, which has now been reduced to below ₹42 crore due to design modifications suggested by the bidder.
As per the plan, fabricated iron plates will be used to construct access ramps, which will also be accessible by lifts, leading to the tiled surface of the FOB.
Aluminium Composite Panel cladding, tensile cloth, stainless steel and 10 mm clear glass will constitute weather-protecting overhead canopies with openings on either side and solar panels on top.
“The Skywalk’s length will be around 523 metres and will be a steel structure having pile or isolated RCC footing. The deck and staircase will be made of steel. Granite stone flooring will be used on the steps of the staircase and granite or vitrified tiles will compose the flooring of the Skywalk deck in addition to stainless steel railings on the staircase,” said the official, adding that as many as eight lifts with individual carrying capacities of 20 persons will also be a significant part of the design.