Work on the rehabilitation of the Adomi Bridge on the Volta Lake is progressing steadily.
Currently, the steel components required for the exercise have been produced, while the bridge is being dismantled gradually from the Atimpoku end.
The rehabilitation work involves the replacement of the entire deck.
Besides, all the hangers, the ropes that support the 56-year-old bridge, will also be replaced with new ones.
The GHA Director of Bridges, Mr Owusu Sekyere Antwi, told the Daily Graphic that the rehabilitation exercise, which began on March 10, 2014, was expected to be completed in October 2015.
He said the project would be carried out in two phases. Phase one involves the manufacturing of steel components, while the second phase entails the actual construction work.
As part of steps to ease the frustration commuters and motorists go through on a daily basis, the GHA has constructed a ferry site at Senchi and Atimpoku for the movement of the people and goods across the river.
When the paper visited the facility, workers of the contracted firm, Messrs Bilfinger MCE GmbH of Austria, were busily working on the 12.9-million euros project.
The bridge was closed to traffic on March 10, 2014 for rehabilitation work to begin.
Lack of maintenance on the bridge, which was opened to traffic in 1956, led to the collapse of one of the steel beams supporting it. Two others also developed serious cracks later on, resulting in a depression on a section of the bridge.
Because the two beams had been disabled, the remaining supporting beams took on the additional load of 880 tonnes of steel, a situation experts feared could lead to the facility’s collapse.
It was accordingly closed and less than nine months after repair works had been completed on some of the steel beams, the bridge developed fresh cracks.
Importance of bridge
The 805-feet bridge at Atimpoku in the Eastern Region links the south-eastern part of the country to the Volta and Northern regions.
The Adomi Bridge is the main means by which an average of 120,000 workers, traders, schoolchildren and tourists cross the Volta River daily to and from the eastern corridor and Northern Region of the country.
It is estimated that on the average, more than 3,000 vehicles cross the bridge on a daily basis.
Long queues at ferry site
When the Daily Graphic went to the Senchi site, two ferries were seen conveying vehicles and people across the lake.
However, long queues of vehicles were seen on both sides of the river, awaiting to be ferried across it.
A number of distressed commuters and drivers expressed their frustration over the long hours they spend at both sides of the river to continue their journey, while some drivers also complained about the high tolls they paid.
“When I used the Adomi Bridge in the past, I only paid GH˘1 to ply from one side to the other on the bridge but today, I pay GH˘8 to have my Nissan Urvan ferried to the other side of the river,” John Keteku, a 32-year-old driver, said.
Source: Daily Graphic
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