CHENNAI: The Southern Railway has finally started demolition of Elephant Gate bridge between Central and Basin Bridge Junction, after total lockdown came into force on Sunday.A senior railway official said, the bridge has been divided into several blocks. Each block will be removed using bridge breaking machines. “Now, the demolition works can be carried out without affecting train traffic. Had works been undertaken on regular days, the train movement would have been disrupted for several days.”
The railways and the Greater Chennai Corporation had proposed to build a bridge at an estimation of Rs 30.32 crore.The demolition work was delayed due to delay in replacing the high voltage power lines passing through the bridge. The Tamil Nadu Transmission Corporation Limited (TANTRANSCO) has blamed procedural delay in acquiring land for shifting the lines.
The bridge developed cracks a few years ago and during inspection infringements were found in its dimensions.While the railway board safety norms mandates that distance between centre of the track and permanent structure should be 2.36m along the track, the pillars of the bridge is at 2.28m distance. In addition, the track curve also has got less transition. Following this, speed of the trains were restricted to 30 km/ph below Elephant Gate bridge.
Cracks on the bridge
The bridge developed cracks a few years ago and during inspection infringements were found in the bridge dimensions