Alternative route brings relief to Behala residents
Kolkata: The bailey bridge on Chetla boat canal and the level-crossing connecting the Behala-New Alipore side with Alipore were made operational from Friday afternoon. It has been 38 days since the caving-in of Majerhat Bridge, when this alternative route for movement of medium and light vehicles has been thrown open. State Urban Development and Municipal Affairs minister Firhad Hakim officially flagged off traffic movement on Friday.
"Small and medium vehicles from the Behala-New Alipore side will now travel towards the Alipore side to start with. After the pujas, we will experiment regarding both way movement," said a senior official of the traffic department of Kolkata Police. The bridge, along with the level-crossing, connects the southward extension of Alipore Avenue with Block G in New Alipore, from where moves around 600m to connect with Humayun Kabir Sarani.
Height bars have been installed on either side of New Alipore and Alipore to restrict movement of any sort of heavy vehicles. The work for the bridge and the level-crossing and repair work of the thoroughfares connecting the two sides has been completed in a record time of 20 days, with close coordination between state Public Works Department (PWD) and Eastern Railways.
The PWD engineers did a trial run of the bridge with a number of government and police vehicles, before throwing it open for traffic. A team from the traffic department of Kolkata Police, led by Additional CP (I) Vineet Goyal, visited the spot to supervise the traffic movement.
Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineering Ltd has supplied the two bridges for restoration of connectivity at Majerhat. These bridges were made with SAIL steel and are around 80 feet in length and 14.8 feet in width each.
A senior official of Eastern Railway (ER) said that the level-crossing gate between New Alipore and Majerhat station in the Sealdah-Budge Budge line will be an alternative route for vehicular movement.
"To ensure smooth road and rail movement, 6 pairs of EMU locals in the Sealdah–Budge Budge section will remain suspended from Saturday until further advice. Running of all Up and Down Sealdah South–Nangi Passenger Specials will also remain cancelled from Friday," the official said.