Published On:September 25 2014
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Gandhinagar arch bridge in Kochi to be opened by October 10.

Faced with criticism over delay in adhering to the deadline set to commission Kerala's first corrugated steel arch bridge, Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) has sped up work on its approach roads in Gandhinagar.

The 14X8-metre bridge will link Gandhinagar with Ernakulam Junction railway station's eastern entry will replace the small culvert that existed over the canal here. Speedy construction, lesser cost and enhanced structural stability were cited as advantages of the arch bridge over conventional bridges.

Reacting to the issue, GCDA chairman N. Venugopal said that work on the project is almost over and it can be commissioned by October 10.

'Two trees had to be felled for the project and it took three weeks to obtain permission from Social Forestry Department. Now, the roots have to be removed and a wall built on the eastern entry side to reinforce houses built on the edge,' he said.

Once the bridge is opened, GCDA's focus will shift to adopting the same technology to rebuild a narrow bridge on Sastha Temple Road near Kaloor. 'Though longer, the bridge can be built in three months’ time,' Mr. Venugopal said.

Corrugated steel arch bridges are stronger than conventional bridges built using girder-and-slab technology since they have more surface area though requirement of materials is much lesser and piling is less cumbersome.

On the possibility of widening a narrow culvert that links Girinagar with Panampilly Nagar using the technology, he said that the onus is on Kochi Corporation.

The culvert is used by vehicles escaping traffic snarls on S.A. Road.

New corridor

The GCDA is also working on linking blunt ends of a road behind Judges Avenue at Kaloor, by constructing a road through an 80-metre-long stretch. This will open up a corridor parallel to Banerjee Road, ending near KSRTC stand.

On commissioning Chilavanoor Bund Road, Mr Venugopal said that 1-km-long Sastri Nagar-K P Vallon Road reach can be opened in a month. The road can be commissioned by year end, linking Champakkara with Thevara through Thykoodam underpass on NH Bypass. This will provide an alternative stretch to SA Road.


THE HINDU


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