Over five months after work orders were issued,only 19 roads out of the 161 roads to be built before monsoons have been completed so far. A number of different reasons have been cited by contractors and officials from the roads department for the delay in execution of the said projects worth Rs 549 crore. The work orders were issued on November 1 and have to be completed before the onset of monsoon.
Swiss firm SGS Ltd,which was appointed as a third party auditor for overseeing the construction activities of the 161 major roads,submitted a 200-page report on December 28 last year in which it made remarks about at least 38 locations across the city where work had not begun even by the end of December owing to various physical and technical constraints. Not a single cement concrete road has been completely laid. However,concrete roads require much more time.
Incidentally,work has not been started mostly owing to encroachments and presence of other underground utilities and other ongoing BMC related project works. Contrary to belief,lack of No-Objection Certificate to divert traffic from the Traffic Police and the RTO has held up construction only at four locations in Bhandup.
Additional Municipal Commissioner Aseem Gupta said the coordination with the traffic police department is much smoother than what was expected. However,some technically complex situations have held up work.
For instance,work on a major stretch of the Chaphekar Bandhu Marg in Mulund has not commenced due to sewerage lines found during excavation and no clearance from the Sewerage department to shift or divert them.
Construction of concrete roads along stretches of the Durani Road,Maharaja Agrasen Road,Akash Lane,Mohd Nabhi road and station road in Kurla due to non-removal of encroachments. Work on construction road number 3 from Chembur to Tilak Nagar to Mandala in asphalt has been held up due to leakage from a water main in the area.
BMC floats tenders for cold road mixes to fill potholes
This monsoon,the condition of roads this monsoon could improve as the BMC finally floated tenders for the use of cold road mixes while filling up potholes,on Thursday. Till now,the use of hot asphalt mixes,which tend to wear off after just one shower,has been blamed for the poor condition of roads during monsoon.
Like last year,this year too,the monsoon road repair tenders are worth Rs 40 crore,with an additional provision of Rs 16 crore. The four shortlisted cold mix supplying companies are Carboncore,Hindustan Colast,Wonderpatch and Patchmaker. The tenders will have to be filled by the four companies in joint venture with existing local roads contractors. Additional municipal commissioner Aseem Gupta said though these suppliers have good quality products,they are still inexperienced when it comes to filling potholes. To get the required logistics in place,we asked them to tie up with local road contractors who have the experience, he said.