Potholed bridges, roads make city commute a nightmare
Potholed bridges, roads make city commute a nightmare

Potholed bridges, roads make city commute a nightmare


Corporation tells contractors to adhere to August-15 deadline to restore roads Even as government agencies cite the high groundwater table in the city as a reason for roads giving way in rainy weather, potholes are seen on at least a dozen overbridges. Referring to the Palarivattom flyover built by the Roads and Bridges Development Corporation of Kerala (RBDCK) developing potholes within a year of its commissioning, P.T. Thomas, MLA, said he has suggested to the agency to blacklist the contracting firm which built it. Responding to this, a senior official of the agency said the contracting firm RDS had so far not adhered to its directive to resurface the bridge. The bridge’s defect-liability period has not expired and the firm was duty-bound to ensure safe motoring through it. The bridge’s condition would not have deteriorated to such an extent had the contracting firm completed resurfacing during summer months, he added. Potholes also dot the Pullepady overbridge maintained by the RBDCK and the approach span of Kathrikadavu overbridge maintained by the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA). Goshree bridges Even worse is the condition of the three overbridges built by the Goshree Islands Development Authority (GIDA), that link the mainland with the Goshree islands. An official of the agency said the resurfacing of bridges and approach roads had been tendered. The work can be done only after the rain subsides. He did not have a satisfactory answer for the inordinate delay in tendering and why the work was not executed during summer months, though the bridges were pothole-ridden for over a year. On its part, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has not rectified gaps that developed over damaged expansion joints of Vyttila railway overbridge. Accidents and snarls are the norm on the rickety bridges due to the inordinate delay in repairing them. Bad roads The apathy in executing maintenance work during the summer, coupled with trenching works that extended up to June, has led to criticism being levelled against the agencies that own roads . The worst hit are the roads in Thripunithura municipality. “The KSEB trenched half the width of S.N. Junction-Eroor Road owned by PWD (Roads wing) just before the monsoon, and the entire corridor which was in good condition is in a mess now. Vehicles can move safely only in one direction. Similarly, the KWA dug up a busy 350-metre stretch between East Fort and Statue Junction just to provide water connection to four houses. Both agencies did not do even temporary restoration work,” said V.P. Jayan, the president of Thripunithura Rajanagari Union of Residents’ Associations (TRURA). The Kundannoor-Pettah-Irumpanam-Karingachira-Thiruvankulam stretch of the Kochi-Dhanushkodi national highway maintained by the PWD (NH wing) too is in a horrible condition. The overbridge near Thripunithura railway station and the road beside Andhakarathodu are unmotorable, though the annual Athaghosham procession for Onam is round the corner. “All this is because of slack maintenance,” added Mr. Jayan. Potholes that developed over most city roads maintained by PWD (Roads wing), at Thykoodam on the NH carriageway and service roads of Edappally-Aroor NH Bypass maintained by NHAI too have not been tended to. While Minister for Public Works G. Sudhakaran has directed PWD officials to repair roads and bridges by September, the Kochi Corporation has told its contractors to adhere to the August- 15 deadline to restore roads. Many road-resurfacing works in the city have been pending for over a year since contractors are not responding to tenders and are demanding a revised estimate. Issues related to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) too had to be sorted out, said officials of PWD and civic agencies. It has resulted in Panampilly Nagar Road and Thoppumpady-Edakochi Road turning from bad to worse in the monsoon



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