The underground pipeline burst on Saturday that caused a major portion of the Marine Drive stretch outside Giragum Chowpatty to cave in on Saturday morning, disrupting traffic for two days manifests the languorous functioning of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in executing its long-term projects.
Nearly five years after the maintenance of the Marine Drive stretch was handed over by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority to the civic body, the project to resurface the road continues to be stuck at the preliminary stage of finalising designs and completing the overhaul of the century-old utilities underneath it.
However, more than a year after a budget provision of Rs38 crore was made to relay the 4.3 km stretch of the iconic Marine Drive, with mechanised mastic, the designs for it are yet to be finalised.
The pending work of discarding underground British-era water pipelines along the road and transferring water supply to a newly-built water tunnel too, has been pending for two years, since the construction of the tunnel was completed in December 2011.
"There are around 4-5 locations on the stretch where cross-connections have to be made to transfer supply, for which the road would have to be dug up. We are co-ordinating with the traffic police and the work will begin after the monsoon," said Rajiv Jalota, additional municipal commissioner (projects).
There are six outlets of feeder mains that pass beneath the Marine Drive stretch, which need to be discarded and supply through them transferred to the newly-built water tunnel that stretches from Kilachand Garden in Walkeshwar to Cross Maidan in Churchgate. Civic officials said the portion of the road that collapsed on Saturday would be repaired by Sunday evening.
Additional municipal commissioner, SVR Srinivas, said: "After testing water supply through the replaced pipeline by 9 pm (on Saturday), we will begin resurfacing each layer of the road and restore the median by Sunday.