Fly over Bhubaneswar traffic mess from January

The PWD is gearing up to inaugurate the much-awaited Bomikhal overbridge

By Sandeep Mishra in Bhubaneswar
  • Published 14.12.18, 2:01 AM
  • Updated 14.12.18, 2:01 AM
  • a min read
  •  
Bridging the gap: The near-completed Bomikhal overbridge in Bhubaneswar. Ashwinee Pati

Commuters on the Cuttack-Puri Highway have a reason to smile with the public works department gearing up to inaugurate the much-awaited Bomikhal overbridge that will open a three-way traffic for the people of Saheed Nagar, Bomikhal and Rasulgarh.

The officials, who have started constructing the overbridge in 2012-13, have faced a number of hurdles while executing the job. However, the work on the bridge is nearing completion with the department officials fixing a deadline of January to throw open the facility.

The works’ chief engineer (roads) Om Prakash Patel said the work on the final part of the bridge near Bomikhal was going on in full swing and once it was done, a trial run would be taken up for the facility. Later, it will be open full-fledged for the people by January.

“The work on the Rasulgarh side of the bridge had been over in 2015, while the same towards Saheed Nagar was done in 2016. The wing towards Bomikhal was planned later as it took time to complete the work on that side. However, it is also completed now along with the painting of the bridge walls,” said Patel.

The bridge faced hurdles ever since the project took off. The problems included land acquisition towards the Saheed Nagar side, extension towards the Bomikhal side and two incidents of bridge collapse in September 2017 and May 2018 that claimed two lives and injured several others.

Apart from the problems at the administrative and contractor level, the bridge spelt doom for commuters ever since the work took off as the construction had led to damage and narrowing down of the approach roads, waterlogging during monsoon and dust pollution during summer among others.

“It is indeed a much-needed facility, and the administration has rightly planned the bridge. But thanks to lacunas at the government level, the construction took so long. The officials have not provided any proper alternative roads leading to an add-on of the existing problems,” said Bomikhal resident Biswanath Mohanty.

Once completed, the overbridge will open a three-way traffic connecting people from Rasulgarh to Saheed Nagar to Bomikhal. The bridge will play a crucial role since it will reduce the rush on the busy Cuttack-Puri Highway. It will also help people save time presently being waste waiting at the Saheed Nagar level crossing.