Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Hey ROB, all set are you!

Hey ROB, all set are you!
Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa and Minister of State for Railways H Muniyappa will inaugurate the much awaited Railway Over Bridge (ROB) at Cox Town today

Here is a project that’s been delayed by more than two years and has caused unparalleled grief to residents and commercial establishments around it. But the BBMP and the South Western Railways who have partnered this ambitious project say that the wait will be well worth it. The Railway Over Bridge that connects Wheelers Road to the ITC Factory Gate will finally be thrown open to the public today. Here’s a run down of the project and what it means to the city’s traffic.
In size, the over bridge is less than a kilometre long. To be precise, it is just 678 metres long with a standard 7 meter, four lane flyover. Yet this new elevated road promises to make up in might what it loses in size. The Railway Over Bridge will reduce time for motorists travelling from Bangalore East to Banaswadi and most importantly to the Bangalore International Airport by close to half an hour.
‘Previously, people travelling to the International Airport had to go around the city to get to Mekhri Circle which took close to an hour at least. But now, they can hit Banaswadi Ring Road in less than three minutes and then connect to the Hebbal flyover. This will not just save them close to half an hour of travel time but also about 8 kilometres of distance,” said Chief Engineer (East), BBMP, Jayachandra. People travelling to Banaswadi will also have it easy from here on. Instead of taking the Frazer Town Police Station, Pottery Road and then Banaswadi route, it is one straight road home from Wheelers Road-Assaye Road Junction.
But the biggest beneficiaries are those motorists who were forced to cross the railway line near Cox Town. “The line which runs to Byappanahalli has a maximum of about 25 trains running everyday. We close the gate for about 15 minutes for every train that passes which means that approximately 6 hours in a day are lost to the movement of rail traffic. This over bridge will now not only facilitate safe traffic movement, but also encourage unhindered rail movement as well,” say South Western Railway officials.
The project that began in June 2006 was scheduled to be completed in just 18 months. Yet the project took 4 years to touch the finishing line. “During the ongoing project work, the price of steel touched an all time high of Rs 70,000 per tonne, when in fact the contractor had quoted Rs 22,000 while filing the tender. The work was therefore stalled for close to 6 months. When we dug up the road, the cables and water pipe lines were just 20 centimeters below the surface level. All this created a delay,” say BBMP officials.
But the Railway Over bridge will not be the only good news for motorists travelling this way. “We will also be facilitating a free left going towards the city and will start work on the signal free corridor towards Hennur which will make traffic more organised,” said Jaichandra.
— Connecting Wheelers’ Road to ITC Factory Gate — Length - 679 meters — Width - 7 meters — Carriage way - Four Lane — Total Cost - Rs 16.45 crore — Cost borne by the BBMP - Rs 9.48 crore — Cost borne by the South Western Railways - Rs 5.95 crore


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