Railway bridge will be ‘engineering marvel’

 

A railway bridge taller than Paris’s Eiffel Tower is currently being constructed across the river Chenab in Jammu and Kashmir.

Likely to stand at over 35 metres taller than the monument in France, the 1.315km long bridge is expected to be finished in 2019 and is being built to handle wind speeds of up to 161 miles per hours.

Set to connect Bakkal and Kauri, once completed the bridge will exceed the record of China’s Beipan River Shuibai Railway Bridge (275 metres tall).

Standing 359 metres above the river bed below and using over 24,000 tonnes of steel to construct, the structure will cost in the region of Rs 1,100 crore to build.

Once built the bridge will be a vital link in the 111 km-long stretch between the towns of Katra and Banihal - part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project.

A senior Railway Ministry official involved in the building of the bridge said: "This construction is the most challenging part of the Kashmir rail link project and once completed, it will be an engineering marvel.”

As well as becoming a valuable transport link, it is thought the bridge will also be a popular tourist attraction in the area. The bridge will also have a ropeway for inspections to be carried out.

Steel has been used to build the structure due to it being more economical than other metals its ability to resist extreme temperatures and wind speeds.

As the region is prone to frequent terror attacks, 63 mm thick blast-proof steel will be used to enhance safety and security; while the bridge’s concrete pillars will be designed to endure explosions.

The bridge is expected to enhance the state’s economic development and help to improve accessibility.