Amidst uncertainty over utility, AMC inaugurates skywalk

September 17, 2013

Niraj Chinchkhede, TNN

AURANGABAD: Amidst doubts over the feasibility of the skywalk built by the Aurangabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) near the central bus stand, the authorities threw it open for the general public on Tuesday. MLA Pradeep Jaiswal inaugurated the facility in presence of mayor Kala Oza, deputy mayor Sanjay Joshi and others.

The city’s first skywalk, built across the busy road near the central bus stand, was completed around 15-20 days back but was rarely being used by commuters. It has been pointed out by many that the climb on the ‘faulty’ steps of the bridge was a steep one. Nevertheless, speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Oza claimed that the skywalk would be of great use to senior citizens, ladies and kids. “They can now cross the road with ease,” she said.

Deputy mayor Sanjay Joshi said that the municipal body had spent Rs 50 lakh to build the skywalk to streamline the flow of traffic near the bus stand. He appealed to citizens to avoid ‘risky’ method of road crossing and use the skywalk instead. However, when asked whether the authorities would penalise those skipping the skywalk and crossing the road on foot, Joshi said, “We are not in favour of imposing penalty. But we will definitely create awareness in this regard.”

Commenting on the pattern of the skywalk, Joshi said the designed was approved by technical experts and refused to accept that commuters were not making use of it.

“It is a newly introduced system that will take some time to click. Looking at the growing traffic in the area, people will surly use the facility,” he said.

Earlier, expressing doubts over it, member of Marathwada Development Board Vijay Diwan had said that the planners should have designed the steps keeping in mind the old and the disabled. “There should have been more landing space between the steps,” he said. He felt escalators would have been the best option but would have been a costly affair for the AMC.

Corporator Krishna Bankar has also expressed his dissatisfaction over the construction of the facility.

He appealed to the municipal administration to consider installation of automatic steps while designing such facilities at other locations in the city.

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