Although the Kiranpani-Aronda bridge which connects Goa to Maharashtra is completed and ready for inauguration, roads on the Goa side are too narrow and will not be able to take the pressure of large number of vehicles which are expected to come from Maharashtra.
Locals fear that MDR 18 road (Keri to Chopdem), which is narrow from Keri till Mandrem and is presently congested with traffic, will not be able to take the large incoming traffic from Maharashtra if the bridge is opened for vehicular traffic.The heavy traffic on the Patradevi route to Mumbai could also be diverted once the Aronda-Kiranpani bridge is commissioned. The present narrow roads in the Mandrem constituency will not be in a position to take the heavy vehicular burden.There is fear and anxiety in the minds of the people of Mandrem constituency, particularly in Palyiem village.
The cost of the 300m bridge was borne entirely by the Maharashtra government. The work on the approach road in Aronda (Maharashtra) has been completed. The traffic on the coastal road of Mandrem – Arambol -and Kiranpani will increase once the bridge is opened for transport. Sources informed that the bridge is supposed to be inaugurated in this year itself.
There is a government primary school near the bridge and this could endanger the lives of the children.
A bypass road is needed as the existing road passes through the densely populated residential areas. Besides this, there are traffic jams at various places, including near a temple in Palyiem, at Tinto in Arambol and Madhalamaz junction at Mandrem.
"More vehicles will take this route, we are already facing jams because of the narrow road and the trucks carrying sand being increased ," said Hanumant Ghadi from Paliem.
"The road cannot be widen as the houses are located on both the sides. If thebridge is connected to the present road it will increase accidents, it needs to be bypassed," said Sadashiv Naik from Palyiem.
"The expansion of the present Chopdem to Keri road (MDR 18) in Paliem, Aramol and Mandrem junction is nearly impossible as there are densely located houses on both sides of the road," said Dattaram Shetgaonkar.
"I am aware of the situation if the bridge is opened for transport, there will be traffic jams for hours," said local MLA and health minister Laxmikant Parsekar.
Parsekar informed that PWD on priority has designed the new alignment of the parallel road to the MDR bypassing the major traffic congestion points and thickly populated areas. The road has been proposed of 50m width in the open areas and 25m in the populated areas taking into consideration the future requirements.
"The alignment has been completed and I have put up the proposal for the land acquisition which I am sure that my government will sanction as it is the need of the hour," the Mandrem MLA said.
The cost of the land acquisition will be around Rs 150 crore. "The government will provide the market rate of Rs 400-450 per sq m to the land losers, the locals should support the project," Parsekar said. [TOI]