Palarivattom flyover to be demolished

Protestors place a coffin atop Palarivattom Flyover, which suffered multiple cracks within two years of commissioning.   | Photo Credit: H. Vibhu

The shoddily built Palarivattom flyover on the National Highway 66 Bypass in Kochi will be demolished and a new one will be constructed under the overall supervision of Metroman E. Sreedharan.

The work on the new flyover would commence in October first week and the aim was to complete it in one year, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told a press conference on Monday after discussions with Mr. Sreedharan and Public Works Minister G. Sudhakaran.

The design and estimate would be worked out by Mr. Sreedharan who would also do the overall supervision, the Chief Minister said. A reputed agency with good technical know-how would be roped in and there would be another agency for the supervision of the work.

Mr. Sreedharan had pointed out that the structural safety of the flyover had been affected. The IIT-Madras report to rectify the cracks over girders and pier caps was before the government and there was no clarity on the life of the flyover after the repairs, Mr. Vijayan said.

“Technically and financially, it has been inferred that reconstruction of flyover is appropriate and feasible as repairs and rehabilitation is not enough. The government is accepting the recommendation of Mr. Sreedharan,” he said.

The Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) has already arrested former Public Works Secretary T.O. Sooraj and three other officials in connection with the ongoing probe into the flyover fiasco. The VACB, tasked with the inquiry, acted on technical experts’ observation on compromise on quality of materials such as cement and steel and cracks getting bigger.

The structure was built in 2016 by Roads and Bridges Development Corporation of Kerala Limited, a subsidiary of the PWD. Kitco was the design and technical consultant and New Delhi-based contracting firm RDS Projects Ltd. executed the work.

The cracks were detected in the flyover in October 2018 by a team of the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. It has a length of 750 m, including a 442 m bridge, and approach roads on both sides.

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Printable version | Sep 18, 2021 1:35:10 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/palarivattom-flyover-to-be-demolished/article29429907.ece

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