Mumbai: Oshiwara bridge opened, Juhu-Tara road to open today
Two bridges that gave a safety scare declared safe; relief for commuters in Western suburbs
The Juhu Tara Road bridge, which has been closed for two months, is finally going to reopen on Thursday for light vehicles. The Oshiwara bridge reopened on Wednesday. The Juhu bridge was shut for vehicular traffic from Gazadharbandh junction to Juhu beach since June 3, after being declared dilapidated. The repair work is complete and a height barrier is also nearing installation to bar heavy vehicles.
The 28-metre-wide bridge is crucial for traffic movement from Juhu to Bandra and provides the only access to Juhu beach. Following a re-audit of the bridges, the bridge was declared unsafe for traffic and the civic body closed it along with several other bridges across the city. The traffic police diverted vehicles to S V Road and Vaikunthlal Mehta Marg at Vile Parle; SNDT college also allowed traffic from the internal road.
BMC had then asked the opinion of the Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute (VJTI) and an advisory committee set up by the Municipal Commissioner had also examined the bridge. After that, VJTI had suggested putting slabs on the road. On July 5, mid-day had reported in Juhu, Oshiwara bridges to reopen in two weeks' about VJTI's positive audit report, allowing the entry of light vehicles on the bridge. A senior civic official had then said the bridges might take more than two weeks to reopen if it continues to rain. The work was indeed halted due to intermittent and heavy showers. But the bridge is finally ready to be reopened for traffic now. A BMC officer said, "The work of putting slabs on the road has been completed and the installation of the height barrier is in its final stage. Rain had interrupted welding work on the bridge, but it will open now."
The 28-metre-wide bridge is crucial for the traffic movement from Juhu to Bandra and provides the only access to Juhu beach. Pic/Nimesh Dave
The bridge repairs had also sparked controversy. Shirish Patel, a member of an advisory committee, had opposed BMC's decision to put slabs on the road as they would add burden on the bridge. He had also informed civic chief Praveen Pardeshi about the same in a letter on July 26. Patel mentioned that the bridge could have been reopened for light traffic on July 7 if the recommendations of the Citizens' Technical Advisory Committee (CTAC) were followed. But, BMC maintained silence on the issue and continued with the slab work on the bridge.
Oshiwara bridge reopens, too
The Oshiwara bridge on SV Road between Jogeshwari and Goregaon, which had been closed from June 10, was also reopened for light vehicles on Wednesday evening. Traffic on the bridge crucial for western suburbs was diverted via the Behram Baug road, Relief road, link road and Western Express Highway.
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