Mumbai News: BMC Sets Fresh Deadline For Gokhale Bridge, Partial Opening By Feb-End

Mumbai News: BMC Sets Fresh Deadline For Gokhale Bridge, Partial Opening By Feb-End

One side of Andher's east-west connector was earlier assured to be open by Feb 15. However, due to several technical challenges, the BMC will miss the fifth deadline to reopen the bridge.

SHEFALI PARAB-PANDITUpdated: Thursday, January 18, 2024, 03:11 PM IST
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Gokhale Bridge | File

The BMC has again announced a new deadline to open one arm of the Gopal Krishna Gokhale bridge now by the end of February. One side of the east-west connector in Andheri was earlier assured to be open by February 15. However, due to several technical challenges, the BMC will miss the fifth deadline to reopen the bridge, said civic official. 

Municipal Commissioner directed officials to complete work by Feb end

The closure of the key connector has resulted in traffic woes in Andheri. Taking serious note of that, Municipal Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal directed the civic officials to complete the work on time and open one side of the bridge by the end of February. He also took a review of bridge work in BMC headquarters on Wednesday. The meeting was attended by local MLA Ameet Satam, senior civic and railway officials and the contractors. 

The open web girder (OWG) of the Gokhale bridge was launched on December 3, following which it was slewed by 14 metres towards the western side to connect the entire east-west stretch. It has been fully lowered and put in place on January 14. "After the installation of the girder, the BMC will start work on the casting of a deck slab, a protection wall called an anti-crash barrier will be constructed, work on expansion joints, asphalt road surfacing and other works," said a civic official.

"Space constraints, separate contractors to carry out the work one appointed by the western railways and two by the BMC. The permission required for night blocks from the railways is one of the various challenges faced by the BMC while carrying out the reconstruction of the bridge. The work of lowering the open web girder, weighing about 1,300 metric tonnes, is technically very challenging and risky. Its first such task even in the history of Indian Railways," added the official.

Gokhale Bridge's reconstruction work began in April 2023

The bridge was closed for vehicular and pedestrian movement on November 7, 2022, after it was declared unsafe in an audit. The reconstruction work began in April 2023, but the BMC failed to keep its promise of opening one lane by May 31 last year. The strike at a Rourkela steel plant in May and flooding at an Ambala workshop further delayed the delivery of steel to Mumbai. The deadline was subsequently extended thrice; first to September 2023, then to Diwali and finally to December 2023 and now February 15, 2024.

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