Two-lane bridge over Sanuorü now opened to traffic; roads in all districts to be repaired
Kohima, Nov. 30 (EMN): In what may come as a much-need relief to commuters and vehicles plying along the Secretariat Road, the two-lane bridge over Sanuorü was opened to traffic on Monday.
Deputy Chief Minister and Minister in-charge of PWD (R&B) Y Patton opened the bridge. He said that the contractor has sought to extend the time of completing the other two-lane bridge till December 2021 but he has urged to complete it before the deadline.
Further, Patton thanked Kohima village and landowners for their co-operation.
Chief Engineer PWD Limanaro said that the proposal for the construction of the four-lane bridge was submitted to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) for an amount of INR 20 crore, and sanctioned in 2015.
So far, the ministry has released INR 60 lakh for the project. The state government had also released INR 7 crore in 2018 for the project, which will be reimbursed after the ministry releases the remaining fund.
As of now, INR 7.6 crore has been paid to the contractors out of the estimated INR 20 crore.
She added that the department would request the state government to release more funds while waiting for the ministry.
As far as the revision of the estimate is concerned, the department has not come to an exact amount as there are many additional works that are coming up along the river. Therefore, an exact additional amount that is to be proposed to the government cannot be disclosed, the chief engineer said.
How the project began and stands now
Commissioner and Secretary of Work and Housing, Rovilatuo Mor gave a detailed report about the four-lane bridge project.
The heavy rains in the state during July and August in 2015 caused considerable damages to many roads and bridges, thus affecting the movement of vehicles. One such major catastrophe was the stagnation of water in Sanuorü due to the blockage of the cross drain (culvert) from August 6, 2015, onwards, he said.
Debris brought by the flash flood had completely blocked the water passage, leading to huge collection of water upstream. This could have led to the breach of the road surface due to the water pressure and simultaneously causing havoc to the surrounding areas, the officer added.
This alarming situation caught the attention of all the departments concerned and immediate preventive measures to avoid heavy damages to the areas were taken up. The initial exercise of pumping out the water did not give satisfactory results; therefore, the road surface had to be cut across to allow the flow of water downstream. So, the road leading to the Capital Complex and beyond was cut-off, he pointed out.
After deciding to construct an alternative sub-way towards the upstream side of the river, the department started the work from August 2015 and the sub-way was opened to traffic on November 30, 2015, which is being used till today, he said.
MoRTH had sanctioned the project in December 2015 and the work was allotted to M/S Vilelie Khamo and KC Angami (joint venture) in July 2016.
Thereafter, construction of the permanent four-lane bridge along Sanuorü was proposed. The actual bridge layout was given only in November 2018, Mor said.
He added that in view of the inconveniences caused to road users along the sub-way, it decided that the contractors concentrate on completion of one two-lane portion first.
Works for the remaining two-lane portion and the ancillary works are going on, he said, expressing hope that the contractors and the department will carry out the works with the same enthusiasm and complete it.
Road repair to start immediately in entire districts
Speaking on the sideline of the event, Patton said that the road repair works in all the districts and ADC headquarters would start immediately.
He informed that the department has kept aside INR 50 crore for the repair and maintenance of roads in district headquarters and ADC headquarters. The district headquarters and ADC headquarter roads are now under Urban Development and not under Road and Bridges. This decision was taken by the Cabinet two months ago, he added.
Advisor for Urban Development, Dr. Neikiesalie Kire informed that three districts were not included in the INR 50 crore provision—Kohima, Mokokchung, and Dimapur. Except for these three districts, the rest have been given funds and work will start at the earliest, he informed.