Cheruthoni: Preliminary work has begun here for constructing a new bridge in place of the one which was severely damaged in the recent floods. As a first step, dredging has commenced on the banks of the Cheruthoni river, near the old bridge, to study the soil conditions and presence of rock.
The task is being carried out by an expert team of National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) that has arrived from Tamil Nadu. Conducted with the aid of various devices, the examination of soil and rock composition is expected to be completed within one week.
Alongside, work to prepare an estimate for building the new bridge is underway. NHAI authorities said that the construction would take place on a war footing. The Union Government has agreed to construct a a new bridge. The Union Ministry of Surface Transport has given the nod as the matter was raised before it. Joice George, MP, had earlier stated the Centre was informed on the need for an urgent bridge in the wake of unprecedented floods.
Th estimated cost of a constructing a parallel bridge at a higher level than the existing bridge is around Rs 15 crore, and a detailed project report on this would be sought, Kerala Minister G Sudhakaran had said recently.
The Cheruthoni bridge which connects the Thodupuzha-Puliuyanmala national highway in Idukki district was built half a century ago.