Gangtok: The prestigious Tashi Namgyal Academy got two foot-over bridges to counter the growing threat of accidents. The school students had been facing a grievous threat of crossing the Bhanu Path and Sonam Gyatso Marg with the highway near the TNA gate for long. The twin foot-over bridge allows pedestrians to walk safely without disturbing the road traffic. The project was long pending since 2017 and was finally inaugurated by Chief Minister Prem Singh Golay constructed under Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT).
The bridge’s length is 280 feet, with a width of 6.5 feet, and the railing height is 4.5 feet. The bridge’s foundation has M20 grade reinforced cement and the structure is constructed with super fabricated mild steel weighing 85,000 Kg.
Urban Development Secretary MT Sherpa informed that the twin bridges cost around Rs 3.42 crore. “It was only recently we could get the funds from the Government of India, with the intervention of the State government. The bridge is dedicated to the students of TNA and the public. It will also help minimise the traffic congestion when parents come to drop the students. There was a probability of accidents every time on the stretch. There is a similar plan for Holy Cross School in the 6th mile, which faces a similar threat of an accident. We are looking towards parking or drop and go space for parents in the stretch for TNA as well as for Holy Cross School,” he added.
TNA Principal George Jacob praised the initiative under the AMRUT Scheme claiming it was a necessity for a long time. He shared, “The chaos that happens in the morning and evening when children arrive and leave the school, it becomes very dangerous for the children, parents and the public. The foot over will counter the issue, there will be no blockage. It is also great that students will walk up the stairs to come to school, which will be a mild exercise for their health. The initiative was by GP Upadhayaya, who was then Education secretary, it didn’t get completed during his tenure because of some issues. With Chief Minister giving the push, the bridge was finally inaugurated.”
On the foot-over bridge being inside the school premises now, Principal Jacob informed that there will be entry gates even on the bridge. However, parking continues to be a problem for the school. “But instead of parents waiting to cross the street with their children, they can drop them at the bridge and leave. I don’t think there is space for parking and this is part of the National Highway so it may not be feasible. The previous Mayor Shakti Singh Chaudhary being an alumnus of the school pushed the project through the Gangtok Municipal Corporation, even the engineers involved are an alumni,” informed the Principal.
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