Detours and longer trips for residents

Just one day after his wife wondered aloud if a lift should be built at the overhead pedestrian bridge in Balestier Road, the bridge was gone by yesterday morning.

"It was a very useful bridge. My wife, who is 65 and suffers from knee pains, was just suggesting to me that a lift should be built for it," Mr Natarajan, 71, who goes by only one name, told The Sunday Times. "But now we have no more bridge."

The retiree, who has lived in McNair Road for 10 years, used the bridge every day to cross the road towards Tessensohn Road before walking about 30 minutes to the Tekka Market.

He said his journey will be longer now because he has to use the traffic crossing about 100m down the road and take a different route.

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The pedestrian bridge in Balestier Road closest to Tessensohn Road was damaged, and later removed, after the arm of an excavator being ferried on a trailer crashed into it on Friday night.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said the beams of the damaged bridge had to be removed as its structural integrity had been compromised.

LONGER WALK

I hope they replace it soon... Last night, I had to walk one big round after they cordoned off the area. I took an extra 15 minutes to get home and my legs hurt after that.

MADAM ANG SUAN CHOO, who used the bridge every day.

The Building and Construction Authority said its engineers found the bridge to be in a dangerous condition and recommended that the entire bridge spanning both sides of the road be removed.

The road, which was closed for overnight recovery works, opened at 7.30am yesterday.

It is not known when the bridge will be rebuilt.

Resident Ang Suan Choo, in her 60s, said the bridge was built more than 30 years ago. The supermarket cashier used it every day when returning home from work, but will now have to walk 100m to the other pedestrian bridge near the Ceylon Sports Club.

"They took down the damaged bridge very quickly. I hope they replace it soon," she said.

"Last night, I had to walk one big round after they cordoned off the area. I took an extra 15 minutes to get home and my legs hurt after that."

Tan Tam Mei

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on July 23, 2017, with the headline 'Detours and longer trips for residents'. Print Edition | Subscribe