|The Goshree Islands Development Authority (GIDA) remains indecisive on the construction of the much delayed Pizhala-Valiya Kadamakkudy bridge though the Public Works Department (PWD) had initiated preparatory works for the bridge last month.|
PWD (Bridges) officials visited the site last month following a meeting convened by local MLA S. Sarma.
“Steps have been taken for soil investigation and the results are expected in a fortnight. Soon thereafter, experts of DRIQ Board, PWD’s design wing, will draw up a design and detailed project report based on which the work will be tendered,” PWD sources said.
The Pizhala-Valiya Kadamakkudy bridge is part of a cluster of three bridges being built to link Chathanad, part of Ezhikkara in North Parvaur, and Kochi side on Container Road in Moolampilly. The other two bridges are the Moolampilly-Pizhala bridge and the Valiya Kadamakudy-Chathanad bridge, the construction of which are under way.
The State government had allocated ₹40 crore for the Pizhala-Valiya Kadamakkudy bridge in the 2017-18 budget. “We were following up the project since then with the PWD (Roads) division. Only later did we realise that it came under the PWD (Bridges) division,” said Kadamakkudy panchayat president Shalini Babu.
PWD sources attributed the delay to the confusion over the involvement of GIDA, which was executing the other two bridges. Eventually, it was decided to go ahead with the initials work using the budgetary allocation for the bridge.
GIDA sources said that the next governing council meeting of the agency would decide on the nature of its involvement in the construction of the bridge.
The proposed Pizhala-Valiya Kadamakkudy bridge is located between the Moolampilly-Pizhala bridge and the Valiya Kadamakudy-Chathanad bridge approaching the Container Terminal Road.
“The construction of the ₹81-crore Moolampilly-Pizhala bridge is almost 90% complete while the ₹57-crore Valiya Kadamakudy-Chathanad bridge about 75% complete,” GIDA sources said.
Incidentally, two girders of the under-construction Moolampilly-Pizhala bridge measuring 180 metres had collapsed in March last year. The mishap occurred when the frame erected in the river for constructing the girders were being removed. Fortunately, there were no casualties since the workers were taking a break.