BMC closes 11 ‘dilapidated’ bridges

Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation. Photo:  

Facing flak after the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) footbridge collapse, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has closed access to 11 bridges and footbridges that were declared “extremely dilapidated”. They are expected to be pulled down soon.

Six persons died and 31 were injured after a footbridge near CSMT over the busy D N Road collapsed on Thursday night. After the collapse, questions were raised about why the bridges declared dilapidated by BMC itself last year have not been pulled down yet.

After the Mahad bridge collapse and the Andheri bridge collapse, BMC had appointed consultants for a detailed structural audit of 296 city bridges, FOBs. Of these, 110 were found to be in good condition, 107 required minor repairs, 61 required major repairs and 14 were to be demolished. Of the 14, at least three, Tilak Nagar FOB, Gandhi Nagar bridge in Malad and Yellow Gate FOB in Masjid have been demolished.

Of the rest, some, including the two FOBs at Marine Lines, were shut before the CST tragedy.

“We will ensure the bridges which are not shut yet, are closed for pedestrian movement,” said Vijay Singhal, additional municipal commissioner, BMC.

BMC had originally planned to take up phase-wise demolition as it would affect traffic and pedestrian movement across the city.

Since Friday, BMC has barricaded those bridges that were not shut for movement yet. However, the next step will be to finalise all work orders for demolition.

Demolition of bridges also goes through the tendering stage wherein a demolition contractor is appointed. Since some of these bridges are smaller than 1km, it may not be a lucrative job for contractors. In the case of at least two tenders, BMC has not been able to get response from bidders.

Meanwhile, all city bridges and FOBs will be re-audited to verify their status. If required, necessary changes will have to be made to their work orders as repair work will start or has been started already. If not, repairs can go as planned.

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Printable version | Jun 20, 2021 12:31:23 PM |

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