Friday, 19 April 2019 | 07:41 WIB

Public Works Minister: Collapsed Batang Kalu Bridge of Padang-Bukittinggi Road being Restored

Minister Basuki in a work visit to Padang, West Sumatra

PADANG, NNC - Public Works and People's Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono said the restoration of traffic on the Padang-Bukittinggi road which was cut off due to the collapse of the Batang Kalu Bridge in 2x11 Sub-district, Padang Pariaman, West Sumatra, on Monday (12/10/2018) to be carried out in 3 stages. The first stage is the construction of a temporary bridge targeted to be functional as one lane on Saturday (12/15).

Although only one lane can be passed, the presence of temporary bridges is very important because the main logistics and human transport links between Padang-Bukittinggi-Pekanbaru can be restored.

"I specifically went to this location on the orders of Mr. President Joko Widodo because he monitors closely [the handling of Batang Kalu bridge]. He ordered that the connectivity of the Padang-Bukittinggi section to recover faster," said Minister Basuki in the official statement of the Ministry of Public Works.

According to plan, traffic from Padang to Bukittinggi will be via a temporary bridge. For the other direction, the flow is diverted through the Sicincin-Melalak line.

The second stage, after the temporary bridge is finished, the Ministry of Public Works through the Third National Road Implementation Center of the Directorate General of Road Works will build a Bailey bridge beside the temporary bridge which will begin on Monday (12/17) and is targeted to be completed within seven days.

The third stage, the Bailey bridge is used for both directions, then the temporary bridge will be dismantled and replaced with a permanent bridge. "Construction of permanent bridge will begin in mid-January 2019 and is targeted to be completed within 6 months," Basuki said.

"We will use local contractors, as well as material to be supplied from concrete plants in West Sumatra. The cost of building bridge is estimated to be around IDR15 billion. Even though it is only 30 meters, it uses bore pile construction so that it takes 6 months," he explained.

To prevent the potential scouring of water under the bridge structure, the Ministry of Public Works through the Sumatra V River Basin (BWS) - Directorate General of Water Resources in parallel is currently working on the building which regulates the Batang Kalu River stream.

"Work has been carried out with emergency response funds and will be continued with the 2019 budget. River cliff reinforcement is done by using sheet pile on both sides of the bridge and is targeted to be completed in February 2019," said Head of Sumatra V BWS Maryadi Utama.

Minister Basuki continued his working visit to review another bridge, the Batang Mangor Bridge, which was also damaged by the floods on the district road section in Padang Sago Sub-district. The bridge repair will be carried out jointly between the Ministry of Public Works and the Regional Government.

"We will do a thorough check first, maybe it does not need to be dismantled entirely, just needs the removal and retrofit," concluded Minister Basuki.