BMC floats tender to repair Hughes Road
BL Soni

Mumbai: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Monday finally floated a tender to repair the Hughes road or N S Patkar Marg which was damaged after a massive landslide in August. The deadline to open the bids is 15 days said BMC officials. The estimated cost of the project along with miscellaneous costs including water, sewerage and supervision charges is Rs 62.85 crore.

Traffic in South Mumbai has been thrown out of gear due after the arterial road was damaged. More than two months after a massive landslide at Malabar Hill led to the NS Patkar Marg or Hughes Road being closed for traffic, the BMC is yet to start repairs on the road.

After the landslide, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray visited the site twice and the BMC even appointed a committee headed by IIT-Bombay Professor DN Singh to suggest a solution to prevent further landslides at Malabar Hill.

The civic body had earlier said that tender for repairing the road would be floated on October 5. However, the civic body also states that there has been no delay in floating the tender.

Additional Municipal Commissioner (Projects) P Velarasu told the FPJ that there was no delay. “The report was submitted by IIT. There was one week for tender document preparation. Once the documentation was complete, we floated the tender. It's a 15 days short tender," said Velarasu.

The road, which links Opera House with Kemps Corner and connects Peddar Road to the north, was shut for over a month after the August 5 landslide. It is currently open for south-bound traffic in the mornings and north-bound traffic in the evenings, leading to massive traffic snarls in all other roads in the area.

However more than two months since the August 5 landslide, the BMC hasn’t begun work to prevent more landslides at Malabar Hill nor have road works begun. Work at Malabar Hill was to be in two parts. One was the road repair work at NS Patkar Marg and the larger slope stabilisation work of Malabar Hill was to be done after a detailed study.

“The duration of work would be around 18 months. Since the area is loose and land mass is still mobile, adequate structural design that could withstand seismic disturbances would be planned.” Velrasu added.

Sources said that some existing contractors wanted the work to be allotted to them directly without a tender process. “They have savings in other works. But we did not accede to that request. They were overruled. We have floated a new tender as we wanted," said a senior BMC officer.

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