Preparations are going on in full swing to demolish an old bridge in the busy Chandni Chowk area of Pune city in Maharashtra through a controlled explosion during the intervening night of Saturday and Sunday, district officials said.
The planned demolition of the bridge has generated a lot of curiosity among local people.
The razing of this bridge is part of an ambitious project that is aimed at improving the traffic situation at the Chandani Chowk junction, which currently faces traffic snarls, especially during the morning and evening peak hours. As per the plan, a flyover will be constructed in its place and the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and local civic authorities are involved in the work.
Officials said that a team of Edifice Engineering along with the NHAI authorities will carry out the demolition of the bridge. This is the same company that had demolished Noida's Supertech Twin Towers in the last week of August this year, they said.
Police personnel along with district officials have been present at the spot since Saturday morning. The area will be cordoned off after 11 pm on Saturday as the explosion to demolish the bridge is scheduled to take place around 2 am on Sunday, they said.
Vehicular movement in the area will be stopped from 11 pm to 8 am, said Rahul Shrirame, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic).
"During this period, lightweight vehicles can use alternative roads to travel, while heavy vehicles will be halted. Vehicles moving from Satara towards Mumbai will have multiple options to commute in the city. Commuters can use the old Katraj Tunnel, Navale Bridge, Warje Exit and later join Somatne Phata to travel to Mumbai," he said.
"Travellers from Mumbai can exit at Somatane Phata, Baner route to enter the city before resuming their journey towards Satara," he added.
On Friday, Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari had conducted an aerial inspection of the ongoing bridge work at Chandani Chowk and held talks with local authorities on resolving the traffic issues. In August this year, Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde had visited the area to take a review of the traffic situation.