On June 1, the bridge’s portion connecting GK Marg with NM Joshi Marg was opened. On September 18, one arm of the part connecting Lower Parel to Curry Road was opened as work continues on the other arm.
Locals are not satisfied. Five years is a long time to wait for a bridge to be constructed, they say, demanding that the authorities open the entire bridge at the soonest. Since its closure in July 2018, the absence of the nodal connector has caused hardship for locals and office-goers. They say it is becoming a trend for the authorities to open bridges partially, pointing to Andheri’s Gokhale bridge, slated to open partly by December.
Bhavik Shah, who lives at Marathon Era society in Lower Parel, said, “The BMC is delivering a massive project like the Costal Road in a five-year period, while a bridge like Delisle has taken them over five years. There is so much politics involved in the making of the bridge! In the end it is motorists like us who suffer. With only part of the bridge open, it is likely that there would be excess load on that part, with crowds using it for Lalbaugcha Raja darshan,” said Shah. “The authorities should have hurried to open the entire bridge before Ganpati.”
Lower Parel resident Murtaza Ali Rajkotwala said that after taking a detour to reach from Lower Parel to Curry Road for five years, he is just happy that a part of the bridge is finally operational. “Something is better than nothing,” he said.
Civic officials have cited various reasons for the delay, including more time required for concrete curing, a disruption in the supply of steel for 15 days, and a water tanker strike earlier this year.