Gurupura bridge cries for attention

Gurupura bridge cries for attention

A view of Gurupura bridge.

Gurupura bridge, built in 1923, and is one of the oldest bridge across the Phalguni river on Nanthoor-Moodbidri-Karkala National Highway 169 connecting Mangaluru, is crying for attention. The motorists fear that the bridge might collapse at any time.

Though expert team including senior officials from the National Highway Division of PWD and civil engineers examined the bridge and certified that the bridge is safe, motorists fear travelling on the bridge, looking at its condition.

The bottom portion of the bridge is rusted. The girders have weakened. The iron railings which on the bridge have disappeared. The bridge has not seen any maintenance for the past many years, said the locals.

The bridge is poorly maintained and thick shrubs grow on the edge of the bridge during monsoon. The narrow bridge cannot bear the burden of heavy vehicles. Only one bus or truck can pass over the bridge at a time.

“If two buses plying in opposite directions attempt to pass over the bridge, traffic is thrown out of gear. There is no space near the bridge to reverse or park vehicles, in case of traffic block,” the residents said. 

The bridge is filled with potholes. The authorities only take up the patch work of the bridge. Though Mangaluru-Moodbidri- Solapura stretch was upgraded as National Highway a few years ago, no measures have been taken to construct an alternative bridge across the river. 

Now, the NHAI has planned to undertake construction of a bridge adjacent to the Gurupura bridge. However, the work is yet to begin.