Bhubaneswar, Dec 03: Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik has urged the Centre to sanction funds for another bridge over River Brahmani near Rourkela on the Biramitrapur-Barkote section of NH-143.
In a letter to the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, Patnaik said that the Steel city Rourkela is connected to western Odisha and northern India through a two lane bridge that was constructed in the 1970s over river Brahmani. Since the bridge is in bad condition because of the heavy use of mining and other commercial vehicles over the years, another bridge is required over the river for the city.
Patnaik said "NHAI took up four-laning of the Biramitrapur-Barkote section of NH-143, which also included construction of a new bridge over river Brahmani, and awarded the work on May 31, 2012. But the award was foreclosed due to delay in environmental clearance".
"In the meantime, the condition of the said bridge is worsening by the day. In the eventuality of any damage to the bridge, commercial traffic to Rourkela will be completely disrupted", Patnaik stated in the letter.
"In view of the above, I would request you to direct the National Highway authorities to take up construction of a new bridge near the existing bridge and at same level and grade so that the developed commercial and residential areas of Rourkela will not be unduly affected. The bridge work may kindly be taken up as a stand-alone project to save time," Patnaik said in his letter.