Mangaluru, July 10, 2018: The Nanthoor (Mangaluru)-Surathkal stretch of National Highway 66 that is proposed to be made a six-lane one by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) will sport an eight-lane bridge across Phalguni (Gurupura) at Kulur. The existing two bridges, which have two carriageways each, would be connected to proposed service roads to serve New Mangalore Port Trust and other establishments around Panambur while a six-lane bridge would be built in between these bridges, said NHAI project manager (Technical) Ajith Kumar. The six-lane bridge would directly be connected to the Kulur flyover.
The NHAI also plans to rebuild the old arch-bridge on Udupi-Mangaluru carriageway, as recommended by its consultant R.V. Associates.
National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has proposed to reconstruct three old bridges along the coast, including the one-km bridge on the Sharavathi at Honnavar, after conducting extensive inspection on its structure and othersacross the State last month.
The NHAI in routine inspection of bridges in its network with consultant R.V. Associates undertook extensive survey of major and minor bridges in the NHAI network during the period and recommended reconstruction or rehabilitation of one major, two minor, and two extra-long bridges along National Highway 66 that passes through the Karnataka coast.
A major bridge under State PWD across Phalguni (Gurupura) in Bantwal taluk of Dakshina Kannada had collapsed on June 25.
Besides the Honnavar bridge, the consultant has also recommended reconstruction of the old bridge across Aghanashini between Kumta and Mirjan in Uttara Kannada district and the old arch bridge across Phalguni at Kulur near Mangaluru in Dakshina Kannada district.
Deterioration : The consultant noticed cracking, spalling and exposed reinforcement in girder, deck slab and major cut in the external pre-stressing cables in various spans of the Sharavathi bridge. The bridge may not be suitable for the present higher loading as per the Indian Road Congress (IRC) standards, it said while recommending reconstruction.
The bridge, commissioned about four decades ago when the highway was laid, had undergone one major overhaul about a decade ago. It was closed to traffic and vehicles were ferried using barges. Even after the major overhaul, the steel reinforcement in the bridge corroded owing to its proximity to the sea.
At present, traffic moves along the new bridge built by the concessionaire, M/s IRB Infrastructure, as a part of the four-laning of the Kundapur-Goa border stretch of NH66. Similar conditions were found in two other bridges too by the consultant. Besides, the present width of 6.6 m of the Aghanashini bridge was found to be inadequate as per IRC standards.
NHAI project manager (technical), Project Implementation Unit, Mangaluru, Ajith Kumar told media the inspection was rigorously carried out across the network. He also oversaw the inspection during the period.
Project director Samson Vijay Kumar said it has sent the proposal to the headquarters for approval. On approval, reconstruction will be undertaken by amending the scope of works.