One half of Sarai Kale Khan Flyover closed for traffic for a fortnight for repairs
The traffic police have closed half of the 150-metre, one-way flyover to repair its expansion joints. Traffic officials issued advisories, asking motorists heading from Ashram and other parts of south Delhi towards ITO via Ring Road and Sarai Kale Khan to avoid the route for at least 14 days.Updated: Sep 19, 2020, 01:37 IST
Repair work on a one-way flyover in front of the Sarai Kale Khan interstate bus terminus, and ongoing construction of an underpass at Ashram, triggered traffic jams in parts of south and south-east Delhi on Friday evening.
The traffic police have closed half of the 150-metre, one-way flyover to repair its expansion joints. Traffic officials issued advisories, asking motorists heading from Ashram and other parts of south Delhi towards ITO via Ring Road and Sarai Kale Khan to avoid the route for at least 14 days.
“We have closed one half of the flyover -- from Ashram side towards ITO. In the other half, private vehicles are being allowed to move. A week later, the other side of the flyover will be repaired and vehicles will be allowed to move on the other half that would have been repaired by then,” said SD Mishra, additional commissioner of police (ACP), traffic, (southern range), Delhi Police.Traffic movement on the opposite carriageway -- from ITO towards Sarai Kale Khan and Ashram -- would remain unaffected as the road is not part of the one-way flyover. If private vehicles still use this route, they have to either take the half-open portion of the flyover, or a service road below it. which are anyway likely to be choked.
A senior PWD official privy to the development said the expansion joints are being repaired. “We are changing the expansion joints of the flyover, as it has developed gaps,” the official said.
About four-5 km away, work on an underpass at the Ashram intersection -- notorious for traffic snarls -- caused vehicular movement to slow down in and around the area and parts of Lajpat Nagar.
The traffic authorities advised motorists to avoid Ashram to avoid getting caught in traffc snarls.
“Vehicles coming from Moolchand on Ring Road and headed towards Faridabad should take Captain Gaur Marg from below the Lajpat Nagar flyover. Vehicles coming from Sarai Kale Khan and headed towards Faridabad can take a left on CV Raman Marg to get to Mathura Road,” said another official.
Vehicles also moved at a snail’s pace around Sarai Kale Khan as the closure of a part of the flyover created a bottleneck.
Rachit Singh, a commuter heading to Noida, said he took the flyover despite knowing about the repair work and restrictions. “I thought it would be a few minutes of wait, but I barely covered a kilometre in 1 minutes,” said Singh.
Mishra said during this time, commercial vehicles from Ashram would be diverted to the DND flyway to ensure a smooth flow to Ring Road via Mayur Vihar and Akshardham. Commercial vehicles from DND flyway towards Delhi would also be diverted towards the Noida-Akshardham route, he added.
“We are advising private vehicles to avoid this (Sarai Kale Khan) route. We deployed sufficient staff at this stretch. We are handling the traffic signal below the flyover manually during this period,” said Mishra.
Traffic police have put up signboards and deployed its personnel on the DND flyway and the Barapullah flyover to handle any build-up of traffic on those stretches.
Through Friday, the traffic police kept pushing out alerts about the closure of the flyover on its social media accounts.
A senior traffic police officer, however, said the jam in Ashram was due to the construction of the underpass and the restrictions in Sarai Kale Khan had little impact on it.
This Sarai Kale Khan stretch is important because it connects south Delhi with central and northern parts of the national capital. It is also part of Delhi’s Ring Road. A little beyond near the Millennium Park, the road turns towards the Delhi-Meerut Expressway (formerly NH 24) from where commuters can go towards East Delhi and Ghaziabad.