MMRDA has razed portions of the structure in three places, to erect the pillars of the Monorail project; BMC says it never gave permission to break the structure, while the development body claims it did
The old makes way for the new is the adage. However, in this case, a near-century-old structure was unceremoniously broken down to make way for a modern transportation project. The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has razed portions of the Currey Road bridge for its Monorail construction work.
The MMRDA has demolished the bridge wall at three places, in order to erect pillars for the Wadala-Jacob circle Monorail corridor. Pics/Datta Kumbhar
The Currey Road bridge, officially called Mahadev Palav Marg, was built in 1915 and connects the Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Road near Bharatmata theater in the east, and N M Joshi Marg towards Lower Parel in the west.
At three places, the two-feet thick wall of the stone-made bridge has been destroyed, in order to erect pillars that will serve the upcoming Wadala-Jacob Circle corridor of the Monorail.
The wall nearly 12 to 15 feet in height has been taken apart. The bridge had been closed for four-wheelers since December 2012. Only two-wheelers use the bridge currently, with rest of the traffic being diverted via Chinchpokli and Elphinstone bridge.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has been caught napping after its property was damaged. Civic authorities say they never permitted any damage to the wall.
“We have not given any permission to break or damage the structure of the wall. We only gave the nod to lay cables near the bridge,” said S O Kori, chief engineer of the BMC’s Bridges department. He further states that an official from his department would soon visit the site to check on the wall.
According to a historian mid-day spoke to, “While the bridge is not in the heritage list, it is proposed that the structure be included in the prestigious list. I feel the original look of Mumbai is changing. Other old bridges, too, may meet the same fate. This should not happen.”
The other side
MMRDA claims they had all required permissions in place. “We cannot break the wall without the permission of the concerned authority. I will have to check on this,” said Dilip Kawathkar, MMRDA’s joint project director.