CHITTAGONG, Mar 14: The Chittagong City Corporation finally came to its senses after the prime minister expressed dissatisfaction over the dilapidated condition of Chittagong International Airport Road during her visit on Sunday.
Chittagong City Mayor AJM Nasir Uddin held a meeting with engineers concerned, contractors and representatives of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) at his office on Monday.
In the meeting, the mayor instructed engineers concerned and contractors to complete the construction work of three bridges on Airport Road by June 20, 2017.
The contractors were employed through tender in October 2015 to construct three bridges at a cost of Tk 90 million funded by JICA and was scheduled to be completed by September 2016. As the work was delayed abnormally, later the project tenure was extended up to August 2017.
The construction of the three bridges at Cement Crossing, Meghna jetty area and jetty No 15 of the Chittagong Port Authority on Chittagong Shah Amanat International Airport was delayed abnormally due to lack of coordination between the Chittagong City Corporation and the Local Government Ministry.
Chief Engineer of CCC Lt Col Mohiuddin Ahmed said the design was prepared by Local Government Engineering Department, but it was faulty as it had no diversion road for traffic on the busy road during bridge construction.
But Project Director of LG City governance project Md Shahjahan Mollah said the local government ministry does not implement any project itself. The project has been handed over to the CCC for implementation after getting JICA funds.
Accordingly, the CCC floated tender and appointed contractors to do the job, he said.
Mayor Nasir Uddin said now they will complete the work at any cost within next three months. "I started working on Sunday soon after the prime minister left Chittagong after commissioning the two submarines procured for Bangladesh Navy and inauguration of Sheikh Hasina Water Treatment Plant of Chittagong WASA (Water and Sewerage Authority)."
He added: "I called a meeting of the contractors, engineers, project director and JICA representatives to know about the cause of delay in the bridge construction and gave them a timeline to complete the work at any cost by June 20 this year."
The mayor further said he had instructed officials concerned to complete the repair work of Airport Road alongside the bridge construction within a stipulated time because air passengers are suffering a lot as the airport road is in a bad state.
A CCC engineer said the mayor also advised the contractors concerned to prepare their daily work list by today (Wednesday) for ensuring smooth traffic on Airport Road. CCC engineers will monitor the work as per routine every weekend.
The engineer further said they would oversee the work of the contractors. "If the work is not found satisfactory, the CCC will cancel the contract and do the work by its own engineers. In that case, the CCC will also compensate the contractor for its failure."
Lt Col Mohiuddin Ahmed said they held a joint meeting with all concerned and prepared a plan of action.
Additional chief engineer of Local Government Engineering Department Mir Ilyas Morshed and project director Md Shahjahan Molla, among others, were present in the meeting.
Prime Minster Sheikh Hasina came hard on the dilapidated condition of Airport Road and its three bridges approaching the airport while she was addressing the inaugural ceremony on Water Treatment Plant of Chittagong WASA at Chittagong Boat Club on Sunday after commissioning two submarines of the Bangladesh Navy.