Mumbai's first skywalk set to be demolished
BMC's Bridges Department set to recommend knocking down of Bandra skywalk to civic chief, will build new one in its place
The first skywalk in the city is set to be demolished just 12 years after it was built. BMC's Bridges Department has recommended bringing down the Bandra skywalk as engineers think demolition or major repairs of just the staircases won't make the skywalk fit for public use again. The BMC will build another skywalk in its place.
The skywalk was built in 2008 by the MMRDA (Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority) and was closed in June last year after the Himalaya bridge collapse incident of March 2019.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had asked the Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute (VJTI) to do a structural audit of the skywalk after its closure. The institute submitted its recommendation last month suggesting major repairs. VJTI's recommendations included removal of all concrete slabs to decrease pressure on the structure and the demolition of all seven dilapidated staircases. It also recommended more pillars for support, with the distance between any two being not more than 12 metres.
"We have discussed the report with experts and conducted a physical inspection. We feel replacing corroded parts of the beams with new ones, welding extra beams and rods to the structure will only add extra load. It won't yield a better result," said an engineer associated with the project. He added that the department will submit its findings to BMC Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi, who will take the final call.
The skywalk, located at Bandra East, is 1.3-kilometre-long with one arm going to Kalanagar via a circuitous route, and another going to Bandra Court via the Anant Kanekar Marg (station road). The arm going to Bandra Court had the highest footfall in the city. The MMRDA had also cut a 100-metre portion above the Western Express Highway in April 2019 to construct a flyover. It will be asked to rebuild that portion.
Year Bandra skywalk was built by MMRDA
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