The wait is almost over – after years of staring at the ramps of the Whitefield-Kadugodi railway bridge that went nowhere, we are happy to report that the first piece of steel girder over the rail lines was put in place at 1.30 am on March 26th, 2010.
The work of placing the steel girder over the Whitefield Railway overbridge started just past midnight after the electric lines were disconnected from mains over most of the tracks. Two tracks on the Sai Baba ashram side were still operational. A huge crane was brought in and locked the girder in place at around 12.30 am. The crane did a dry run – turning a full 360 degrees with its lifting arm fully extended to ensure that it did not damage any electric lines.
A big truck brought the first piece of the steel girder (16 m long) along the crane and then the actual work started. The huge steel girder was hoisted up, turned, expertly guided between the electric lines and placed safely in its designated place. The entire operation was beautifully orchestrated by a crew of around 50 people from South Western Railways and the contractor.
It sounds simple, but considering the weight that the crane was carrying and the narrow distance between the 25 kilovolt electric lines – this thing should have been telecast on Discovery Channel.
The site engineer South Western Railways shared some information with us – here a brief of what we learned :
– There will be two steel girders laid over the railway tracks. Each girder will be 42 m long.
– Each girder will have three pieces, two pieces of 16 m each (these start from the end of the ramps) and a middle piece of 10 m.
– The plan was to put the first 16 m piece (Kadugodi side) and the middle ( 10 m ) piece in place on March 26th midnight, and on March 27th night, the third which is 16 m piece (Hoskote/Sai Baba Ashram side). (At the time this article went live, all three pieces are in place as per plan)
– Once all three pieces are in place they will be welded and riveted together.
– Once this monolith is ready, it will be shifted by a few meters (parallel to it’s current position), so that the temporary support structure can be used to assemble the second girder.
– Once both the long 42m girders are in place – they will be cross-connected with more steel and a steel sheet will be laid over them and which will form the base of the road that will be laid over the girder.
N Kumar, Manging Partner of KPR said that school buses can go over the bridge. The bridge is designed to widstand a load of 200 tons. ⊕