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Latest road technology to ensure speedy work on Shiradi Ghat

Even as the contract for reconstructing another 13-km stretch of the Shiradi Ghat with concrete is yet to be awarded, the National Highways wing of the Public Works Department is confident of concreting the entire 26-km stretch on the ghat before the monsoon by adopting the latest road construction technology.

Work on a 13-km stretch, between Heggadde and Kempu Hole guesthouse, is going on in full swing with the culverts being reconstructed. Of the nearly 60 culverts, 20 have been reconstructed extending their length to 12 m, said a senior PWD official.

Contract for concreting the remaining 13-km stretch between Kempu Hole guesthouse and Adda Hole near Gundya would be awarded after January 27, the last date for opening the tenders, he said. The contractor has been given 18 months to complete the work, and the department wants it to be ready before the monsoon as Shiradi Ghat is a crucial link between the coast and the hinterland.

The contractor would deploy a sensor-based slip form concrete paving machine that integrates steel fabrication and concrete before the actual laying thereby saving considerable time.

Paver-mounted sensors decide the amount of concrete to be dispersed depending upon the nature of the sub-surface thus ensuring uniform structure, the official said.

The machine is capable of laying up to 600 m of concrete road, 8.5 m wide and 30 cm thick, in a day. The department is considering round-the-clock construction with people working in three batches, the official said. The contractor has sourced about 60 per cent of the material required for construction.

Once the contract is awarded to the remaining stretch, the contractor would be exhorted to take up work expeditiously and complete it before the monsoon starts.

Continuous monitoring

The official added that executive engineers from Mangaluru and Hassan will be monitoring the work on a day-to-day basis. Besides, senior officials from Bengaluru would be routinely visiting the site. Civil engineering experts, including B.B. Pande, retired ITT professor, would monitor the work quality, he added.

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