A piece of Mumbai’s history may have gone with the demolition of the iconic Hancock bridge recently, but you can expect a modern version of the bridge soon. The BMC has invited bids for the reconstruction of the rail overbridge, which will now be made of corrugated steel instead of stone, thus giving it a modern appearance. Its width will be increased by 30 feet, and it will be constructed at an estimated cost of Rs 28 crore.

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Located between Byculla and Dadar, Hancock Bridge was a 135-year-old structure made of stone. A specimen of British architecture, the bridge was one of the oldest in the city. Its length was around 60 m and width around 20 m. However, the bridge restricted the speed of trains since the height of the new local trains was more. Therefore, it was demolished last month by the Railways in order to improve the speed of local trains.

Read Story: BMC, CR officials dismantle Hancock bridge near Sandhurst Road

The Hancock Bridge restricted the speed of trains since the height of the new locals was more
The Hancock Bridge restricted the speed of trains since the height of the new locals was more

The BMC will now reconstruct the bridge at a cost of Rs 28 crore. It has invited bids for the same and February 16 is the last date for bidding. The new development will not only increase the speed of local trains but will also help prevent waterlogging on the tracks in nearby Sandhurst Road. The area would get flooded every monsoon and the water would flow onto tracks, further affecting train speeds. After the bridge was demolished, the tracks will be raised.

The new bridge will be 63.5 mts long and 30.8 mts wide. This means, the width of the bridge will be increased by 10 mts or 30 feet, a considerable improvement from the past that will help motorists as well as pedestrians from areas like Mazgaon, Byculla, etc. One footpath will be 2.7 mts wide while the other will be 1.8 mts wide. The difference is due to space availability at the site. Both footpaths will have paver blocks.

Besides, the three existing approach roads to the bridge will be maintained at an equal width of 18.8 mts. The three roads leading to the bridge - Samantbhai Nanji Road, Shivdas Champsi Road and J Rathod Road - will have connectivity to Hancock bridge via connectors with a retaining wall on either side. They will also have service roads for connectivity to adjoining houses, shops etc.

The new steel bridge as well as its road will have a surface of mastic asphalt. Since this is a bridge over railway tracks, the BMC cannot put any pillars on the tracks and hence the bridge will be supported by two pillars called abutments, one on each side.

While the estimated cost of the reconstruction is Rs 28 crore, only Rs 10 crore have been set aside in the BMC budget this year. The rest will be sanctioned next year. The construction period is 15 months excluding monsoon.

“The new bridge will be much wider and will help people frequenting the road. Besides, it will be made of steel instead of iron. We have prepared the design and it has been sanctioned by the Railways. We are now expecting bids, so that the proposal can be taken ahead,” informed S O Kori, chief engineer (bridges).