Mangaluru, Jan 31, 2016: A PWD official in charge of monitoring the sourcing of materials, said the contractor has so far collected only 25% of sand and 16% of aggregate. The sourcing of aggregate is a major problem as the locally available aggregate is of inferior quality, and absorbs water. It has to be sourced from Magadi and the required quantity is hard to come by. The work order approval was given in November. He has to collect 50% of the material if the department has to notify closure of the ghat section.
With the contractor unable to mobilize enough material as on date, uncertainty continues over the closure of Shiradi Ghat for development work. PWD sources said if it cannot be closed by February 10, the work dates will be pushed to December 2016.
This work involves the second phase of road development work on Shiradi Ghat, involving 21km of asphalt and 13km of rigid pavement. In the first phase, the Ghat was closed for seven months from January 2 to August 9. The second phase of work will be undertaken at a cost of Rs 85.28 crore. "Material collection is going on but not at the rate we want. We’ve had a meeting with the principal secretary. If not this season, it will be pushed to December,’’ the source noted, adding that getting the required quantity of cement, steel and sand was no issue.
If the contractor starts on February 10, he will have to finish laying the concrete by April-end or May 15. This time, the officials have directed him to start work from both ends, using machinery at either end.