State transport department and police are working on a plan to run additional buses as many routes have been closed after Tallah Bridge was closed to heavy vehicles. Chief minister Mamata Banerjee today said that she has asked transport minister Suvendu Adhikari to arrange for additional buses to help commuters. “We will run adequate number of government buses,” she said.
Though commuters are facing inconvenience, the traffic restrictions on the bridge are essential for their safety, she added. Miss Banerjee said that the decision on whether Tallah Bridge would be demolished for repair work would be taken by the state chief secretary- led committee. An inspection by the engineering consultancy RITES had found that the bridge needed to be repaired immediately, leading to traffic restrictions.
Traffic has been closed on the bridge since 25 September. On the other hand, the assessment on the environmental impact of demolishing the Tallah Bridge is being done. It is mandatory to study the aspects of pollution in an event of the demolition of a huge structure like Tallah Bridge. The demolition process may cause air pollution and thereby affect the residents of the area. A Mumbai-based company had submitted a report to the state government suggesting that the bridge be demolished.
Data on traffic volume on the bridge has also been sought from the traffic department. The department is also considering a study of the existing electrical and communication cables below the bridge to ensure that no service gets hampered due to the demolition, he said. The PWD has already floated a tender for mapping the existing underground utility services below the bridge.