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Arch-shaped steel bridge planned over Brahmaputra

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 24 August, 2021 12:00 AM
  • Print news

The government has moved to build an arch-shaped steel bridge like Sydney Harbour Bridge on the Brahmaputra River in Mymensingh at a preliminarily estimated cost of Tk 32.64 billion.

The Executive Committee on the National Economic Council (ECNEC) is likely to approve a proposal of the Roads and Highways Department in this regard on Tuesday, Planning Commission sources said.

The government is going to construct the bridge that will have no piers in the river as a model project. 

Under the proposed “Kewatkhali bridge construction” project, an 1100 metres arch-shaped steel bridge will be constructed on the Brahmaputra River with an overpass and dedicated lane for slow-moving vehicles.

Besides the bridge, 6.2 km separate road will be built including an overpass and slow-moving vehicular traffic lane (SMVT).

The project is aimed at establishing a safe and improved road connectivity between Dhaka and the districts of Mymensingh division, land port, EPZ and economic zones located in the areas.

China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has pledged Tk 19.31 billion out of Tk 32.64 billion total estimated project expenditure as loans, according to planning commission officials.

Once it gets a nod from the Ecnec meeting, slated to be held on Tuesday with its head Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair, the project is expected to be complete by June 2025.

Before placing the proposal at the Ecnec meeting, the planning commission raised questions about some proposed project expenditures linked to land acquisition, consultancy service and earth filling work.

Tk 4.54 billion has been sought for acquiring 33.2 hectares of land another Tk 900 million for rehabilitation, but the basis of such estimate and rehabilitation plan has not been included in the DPP.

The commission has termed the Tk 811.6 million estimated cost for the required consultancy service as too much and recommended lowering it.

Similarly, Tk 744.8 million has been sought for 10.64 lakh cubic metres of earth filling work, for which the commission sought clarification.

The commission sought clarifications for the cost of some other components as well and recommended readjusting the cost.