Madikeri-Sampaje NH-275 stretch to get more retaining walls

The busy stretch of National Highway 275 connecting Madikeri and Sampaje, which reported landslides in June this year, is expected to receive retaining walls in 22 places to keep traffic on the highway between Mangaluru smoothly uninterrupted due to landslides during the rain to guarantee.

In addition to 59 retaining walls, which were still being worked on, it was decided to build 22 more walls to stabilize the route and keep traffic unaffected during the monsoons. This means that the road with slope stabilization remains passable.

Mysuru-Kodagu MP Pratap Simha, who led a team of elected officials and senior engineers from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to inspect the route, said the NHAI is building retaining walls across the board at a cost of $ 59 billion 28 km long route based on landslide data reported in previous years.

However, landslides have again been reported in locations other than where the retaining walls will be built. During heavy rainfall in June of this year, the route reported landslides in at least five places.

Kodagu elected officials want a permanent solution to the recurring monsoon problem as people are largely dependent on Mangaluru, especially for health care, and the highway has been the main link. In this regard, an inspection was carried out with NHAI chief engineer Vijay Kumar to examine the possibility of building additional retaining walls to reinforce the carriageway, the MP said.

Mr Simha said the second phase of work on the line could begin in December when the monsoons are over, as engineers need to make estimates and designs. The additional retaining walls can take at least a year to complete, and the approximate cost could be around 100 crore, he added.

Access to the traffic

During earlier monsoons, landslides had affected traffic on the highway route and travelers were left at a disadvantage as they had to take a detour to reach Sampaje from Madikeri towards Mangaluru and other coastal areas.

Kodagu residents have been facing this problem for two years and so a permanent solution has been sought by the NHAI, said former spokesman and MLA KG Bopaiah. “If more retaining walls are built in addition to those already built by the NHAI, there will be no more landslide incidents that could disrupt highway traffic when heavy rains hit the region,” he said.

Vijay Kumar of the NHAI said the route has been checked and places that need reinforcement have been identified. It is expected that the existing work will be completed shortly and that the new work can begin either this year or early next year after the technical certification of the newly identified work areas.

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