Mumbai News: After 17-Day Labour, Gokhale Bridge Girder To Finally Fall In Place

Mumbai News: After 17-Day Labour, Gokhale Bridge Girder To Finally Fall In Place

Launched on December 3, heavy-duty structure is gradually being shifted towards west to connect entire east-west stretch

Rahul MUpdated: Wednesday, December 20, 2023, 11:43 PM IST
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Gopal Krishna Gokhale Bridge | Salman Ansari

Mumbai: After toiling for 17 days, the first girder of the Gopal Krishna Gokhale bridge will be finally shifted as per the desired alignment latest by Thursday morning, said the BMC officials. Launched on December 3, the open web girder was gradually being shifted towards the western side to connect the entire east-west stretch.

“The girder was being shifted by 15-20 metres every day towards the railway track side. The superstructure would then be aligned over the pillars,” said a civic official. The Western Railway had approved a traffic block for 11 days (to facilitate completion of the arduous task). Every night, the girder was brought down by at least 550 millimeters.

Once this process gets completed, the beam will be lowered by 7.5 metres to match the level of approach roads and the entire job will take 11-15 days. The 90-metre girder is the second-longest railway over bridge after its Vidyavihar counterpart, which measures 99.8 meters. The second girder will also be launched in a similar manner.

The civic officials have assured that one arm of the bridge will be opened for vehicular movement by February 15. In the next phase, the BMC will construct the carriageways and erect traffic signals. The entire structure will become operational by May 2024, said the official. A key connector between the east and west sides of Andheri, the Gokhale bridge was shut to the public in November 2022, after it was declared unsafe.

The demolition work of the railway portion of the bridge started a month later. Though the reconstruction work began in January 2023, the BMC failed to keep its promise of opening one lane by May 31. The strike at a steel plant at Rourkela in May and flooding at an Ambala workshop further delayed the delivery of steel to Mumbai. The open web girder, which is a fabricated structure, was also constructed in Ambala and then transported to Mumbai. The estimated project cost is Rs90 crore.

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