Commuters’ woes to end on Jan 25 as Kalyan’s Patripool ROB is ready to be opened
Here is some good news for commuters of the twin cities of Kalyan and Dombivli. The work of the new Patripool Rail Over Bridge (ROB), which had made travelling a nightmare, has been completed and will be thrown open to public on January 25.
It will be inaugurated by CM Uddhav Thackeray through a video conference. The news of its opening has created a buzz in the city with the photos of the new, aesthetically and technically-advanced bridge going viral since Thursday night.
The bridge, which is already lauded as a first of its kind in the twin city by netizens for its contemporary looks, has the longest 76m web link girder in the entire Mumbai Metropolitan region, as per the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) officials.
The bridge led to major congestion in both Kalyan and Dombivli. It was subjected to many protests and became a favourite topic for memes on social media.
Shashikant Sontakke, chief engineer of MSRDC, said, “The bridge will be officially inaugurated and opened for vehicles on January 25 for the vehicles as the work is completed. Apart from the longest web link girder, the bridge also has another girder of 33m. Both these girders were built in Hyderabad.”
Kalyan MP Shrikant Shinde said that the bridge work faced many hurdles though the structural work was sped up in the last few months. “Usually, it takes eight months to build a girder but here, considering the need of the bridge, the girders were built in two-three months.”
The four major reasons that caused the delay were designing the bridge, approvals, opposition from residents and the Covid-19 pandemic.
Shinde added, “The 104-year-old Patripool bridge was dismantled in an emergency after it was declared unsafe by IIT Bombay without any plan ready for the new bridge. Later on, the planning and designing were done and approval was sought. When the work began, the authorities realised that a drainage chamber was blocking the work, so the bridge was redesigned leading to a delay.”
On Friday, Shinde and MSRDC officials visited the newly-built bridge before its inauguration.
The MSRDC took up the work of the new Patripool Bridge in December 2018, two months after it was dismantled by the Central Railway. During the lockdown, work at the site was completely stalled as the labourers deployed for work left for West Bengal. However, around 50 labourers were called back and a flight was arranged for them to come to the city.
“The project work gained speed since May after we decided to utilise the lockdown period. The contractor was asked to bring back the labourers and they came to Mumbai by flight on an urgent basis,” said Aniruddha Borde, junior engineer, MSRDC.
Apart from the newly-built two-lane bridge, an additional two-lane bridge will be built considering the future requirement of the traffic movement on this route. The work of the girder for the additional bridge has already begun.
How was the bridge built?
The girder for the bridge was built in Hyderabad with the help of 250 men in less than two months. According to the Global Steel Company, based in Hyderabad, the work of a girder requires at least nine to ten months. However, considering the need of the Patripool ROB, it was built in less than two month.
“The Patripool girder was built with the machineries that we got from Germany and Italy. We worked day and night to finish it on time. There were several hindrances due to the lockdown and rain, but we managed to finish the work,” said Rishi Agarwal, managing director of the company.
The girders were built with a welding work of 25km length and it has around 30,000 nut bolts and 45,000 connection holes. The entire bridge weighs around 850 tons.
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