Once again, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has demonstrated how it wastes your tax money with its lackadaisical attitude.
The civic body has claimed that it is exploring the option of shifting utility cables under the roads into a common duct to avoid repeated digging of roads. Digging by various utilities is one of the reasons why roads in the city are in a bad shape. However, ducts installed at 11 roads in the city are still lying unused.
Ducts nearly 20 kilometres in length have been laid parallel to 11 roads when these roads were re-constructed or re-surfaced. This was to ensure that all the dry utilities like telephone and internet cables can be shifted in these ducts without excavating the road each time. Good intentions notwithstanding, the civic body hasn't put these ducts to any use so far.
The 11 roads include Poisar road, Anik-Wadala road, Ghatkopar-Mankhurd Link road, Ganpat Kadam Marg in Lower Parel, Lala Lajpatrai Marg and some smaller roads in Borivli, Worli, Kandivli, Dadar and Malad. Most of these roads had developed potholes this year due to repeated digging, something that could have been avoided if the ducts had been put to use.
The ducts were made on the recommendations of the state-appointed Standing Technical Advisory Committee (STAC) on roads.
N V Merani, chairman of the STAC said, "What is the purpose of installing ducts if underground utilities have yet not been shifted into these?" He added that installing ducts is a major step towards pothole-free roads. But with agencies not co-operating in shifting their utilities from under the ground into the ducts, the problem of the potholes could not be solved.
In the BMC's defence, the chairman of the standing committee, Rahul Shewale said that the ducts were not in use due to a 'technical difficulty'. "We are trying to study how these utilities can be shifted," he added.
A common utility duct is a structure above or below the ground, which carries more than two types of public utility lines. To repair or lay new lines, the civic body would only need to open the duct to gain access to the lines without disrupting traffic and digging up the road. Water mains and sewage lines will not be shifted as they are bulky and shifting them could disrupt their connectivity.
There are at least 37 types of underground utilities that run under the roads. These include gas, telephone, fibre optics and BMC-owned water and sewage lines.
Before the monsoon, different agencies had dug up 439 kilometers of the 1,900 kilometers of roads in the city to carrying out utility-related work.
Rain holds up repair work on Dadar flyover
Mumbai:Motorists using the Dadar flyover will have to wait longer for the potholes to disappear.
The resurfacing work, which was to complete by Friday, has been delayed following the heavy showers on Thursday.
The showers forced civic authorities to suspend work on the flyover for the day. Worse, some of the work done over the previous two days was also washed away.
"We couldn't carry on the work due to heavy showers on Thursday. The work has resumed today and will be completed by Saturday," said Satish Badve, chief engineer roads.
Motorists had a tough time negotiating the patch on Thursday and Friday and parts of Tulsi Pipe road were clogged with traffic as a result.
The Kavi Keshavsut flyover, near Dadar station (west) has been in a dismal condition for weeks now. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), which is responsible for its upkeep, has tried filling potholes on the flyover several times, but heavy showers have consistently washed away the work. Therefore, it was decided to resurface the bridge completely. The resurfacing work started on August 17, but was interrupted by rain.
The bridge is under defect liability period, i.e. under guarantee period, and the contractor has to carry out repairs at his own cost.
Repair work was expected to be complete by Friday night since the traffic density was expected to be lower during the extended weekend, allowing adequate time for the new surface to settle in.