India’s longest rail-cum-road bridge, Bogibeel Bridge is all set to be completed by December 2017. The Union Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain while visiting the site said ‘Bogibeel Bridge is scheduled for commissioning in December 2017.’
The bridge has already completed 14 years of construction and has earned the unflattering tag of being one of the slowest moving infrastructure projects in the Northeast.
‘The Bogibeel Bridge project has already undergone multiple delays over the years due to various factors. We are committed to fast-track the mega project and ensure that it is ready for traffic by December 2017,’ Gohain said after inspecting the bridge. He was accompanied by senior Indian railway officials.
He said an outlay of Rs 600 crore has been provided for the bridge in this financial year while the final cost of the project is likely to touch Rs 5,000 crore. The original budget of the project was Rs 1,767 crore. The minister said 70,000 MT of steel will be used in the bridge superstructure, which has been designed by a Denmark-based company. The bridge is also the first fully steel-welded bridge of the Indian railways.
Out of the 41 girders of the bridge, 23 have already been completed but the good news is that all the 42 pillars of the Bogibeel Bridge were completed earlier this year.
Railway officials said the bridge will be a double-decked one with two railway lines on the lower deck and a three-lane road on the upper deck flanked by footpaths on each side.
Inauguration of Bogibeel Bridge
Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was present at the inauguration of the 4.94 kilometers long Bogibeel Bridge held on April 21, 2002. In fact, the foundation stone of the mega project was laid by Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda in January 1997 after the cabinet Committee of Economic Affairs approved the project.