Ridge Road landslide: BMC D ward on high alert
FPJ Photo

Heavy downpour in the city overnight on Tuesday and throughout Wednesday had put the BMC D ward (Malabar Hill, Grant Road, Napeansea road) on high alert over the untouched damaged portion of BG Kher Road, or Ridge Road, which has become "extremely dangerous" after a landslide on August 6. The civic body had assigned an engineer to visit and inspect the spot on Tuesday night, and alert the team if the heavy showers cause any further damage.

"The site has become extremely dangerous and precarious, so we have left it untouched for now. Following solutions submitted by the IIT's technical committee, the tendering process will start in October first week. However, after a heavy rain alert, we have assigned one of our engineers to keep a close vigil at the site. He visited the site multiple times on Tuesday night and inspected it again on Wednesday," said Prashant Gaikwad, Assistant Municipal Commissioner of D ward.

On August 6, after heavy rainfall, a huge landslide near Doongerwadi at Malabar Hill on BG Kher Road towards N S Patkar Road occurred damaging a portion of Peddar road. Following which a team of IIT-Bombay inspected the landslide area to assess the damage and recommended a partial closure for at least six months on both roads. About 150 metres stretch of BG Kher Road has sunk by four feet to six feet. Officials said that the landslide damaged about 220 metres of N S Patkar Road.

The absence of a stormwater drain below a major portion of BG Kher Road, or Ridge Road, could have played a role in the Malabar Hill landslide. BMC officials believe that due to the absence of such a drain, the seepage of rainwater over the years had weakened the retaining wall on the hill slope, leading to the retaining wall collapsing and the landslide.

Officials from BMC’s road department said that there is a stormwater drain from Hydraulic Engineers (HE) bungalow near Malabar Hill Reservoir, which carries rainwater up to the Kamala Nehru Park. However, beyond that till Kemps Corner there is no drain.

The BMC is working on the technicalities and tendering another landslide/ mudslide on Wednesday at Khareghat Parsi colony left residents furious. Residents claim that the two landslides have a connection as both the sites are connected to the hill.

However, BMC says the work on stabilisation of Malabar hill will start post November. "IIT Bombay's technical committee has given us four technical approaches to stabilise the site, we have finalised one of them, however detailing of the plan will be done only next week. Post which we will start the tendering process which will take another week or two. By the end of November, the work is likely to start," said P Velrasu Additional Municipal Commissioner (Projects)

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