PWD to begin environment impact survey of Tallah Bridge

Bid To Assess Pollution During Demolition

Kolkata:16Oct, 2019 (Times of India)

The Public Works Department (PWD) is planning to start an environment impact assessment survey before the demolition of the Tallah Bridge since it is mandatory to do a survey to consider various aspects of pollution.

For the survey, engineers need to take into consideration the volume of vehicles that the bridge can handle even after 30years after it is commissioned.

International bridge expert V K Raina, who was in the city earlier this month, suggested for the environmentimpact study. The quantum of vehicles that would use the new bridge is to be calculated, so it can be designed accordingly keeping in mind the future needs, Raina’s report stated.

Raina’s report suggested the bridge has a mere threemonth life span left and to keep it safe, only small vehicles weighing around 1.5 tonnes are to be allowed on it. The report also asked the state to install rumble-strip speed breakers so that the speed remains below 10kmph. Even on Tuesday, many vehicles were found playing at a speed of 20-25 kmph. Raina also suggested removal of excess load from the bridge. There were several pipes lying on the bridge and people were seen walking through the blocked footpath ignoring all instructions. Some parts beside the pavement were also filled with sand, which was also asked to be removed by Raina.

An engineer said that after trucks and buses were banned, vehicular pollution on the bridge reduced significantly and at the time of its demolition, there will be little vehicular pollution.

“ Air pollution will go up with the bridge being demolished and that might be a cause of concern for the residents staying close the bridge on BT Road. We are awaiting data on traffic volume for the analysis.” An official said that they were considering if a revised alignment can be done for the ramps that will reduce the length of the bridge.

The PWD officials said they may do a survey of the pipeline service below the bridge to make sure that no emergency services get hampered. A tender has already been floated for mapping the underground utility services below Tallah bridge, including electrical and communication cables.

The engineers will do a reconnaissance study to find out if there are major problems that can hinder their design later. They will consider new design features and factors related to environment, health and safety aspects, particularly of the residents around the bridge and of the commuters. They will also analyse alternative routes for cars to find out pollution in the neighbourhood.

Partha Pratim Biswas of construction engineering department of Jadavpur University said: “The impact-assessment study aims to find out how people are being affected by noise, dust and air pollution due to removal of structures for the construction. They need to check that demolition do not affect drinking water facility.”