Facelift for Saidapet bridge

Fresh coat of paint and new grills planned

The Hindu - - CHENNAI - Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent

The Maraimalai Adi­gal Bridge at Saidapet across the Ad­yar will soon be ren­o­vated at a cost of ₹43 lakh. Ten­ders have been called for works that in­clude paint­ing, com­ple­tion of foot­path and in­stal­la­tion of grills on top of the para­pets.

Sources in the High­ways Depart­ment said the con­trac­tor would have three months time to com­plete the works be­ing car­ried out with funds from the Ad­yar River Restora­tion Project.

“We will be in­stalling stain­less steel grills to en­sure pedes­trian safety since the height of the foot­paths have gone up. Paint­ing and beau­ti­fi­ca­tion have been ne­ces­si­tated since the Chen­nai Metro has also com­pleted its work near the bridge,” said an of­fi­cial. Por­tions of the foot­path near the Pana­gal Build­ing that houses govern­ment of­fices and on the Taluk Of­fice side too will be com­pleted. Only re­cently, en­croach­ments from un­der the bridge were re­moved by the Pub­lic Works and Rev­enue de­part­ments.

En­croach­ments re­moved

“En­croach­ments weaken the struc­ture and don’t al­low free flow of wa­ter. We keep re­mov­ing en­croach­ers but they seem to come back. Some­times we also find cat­tle sheds un­der­neath. At one point of time, we came across air con­di­tion­ers too,” ex­plained an­other of­fi­cial.

A for­mer High­ways en­gi­neer said that while reg­u­lar paint­ing and main­te­nance were nec­es­sary to en­sure the health of the bridge, bed pro­tec­tion works too should be car­ried out. “There is reg­u­lar wa­ter flow un­der the bridge and that would wash away the silt and the sand from be­neath. The bed pro­tec­tion works would en­sure safety of the struc­ture’s foun­da­tion,” he ex­plained.

B. VE­LANKANNI RAJ ■

A makeover: Bed pro­tec­tion works too should be car­ried out at the bridge, a for­mer en­gi­neer said.

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