When completed, it will improve accessibility to Dhaka from the country’s central and south western regions
The Padma Bridge Rail Link Construction Project has witnessed an overall 28.23% progress in implementation so far amid the adverse situation created by the Covid-19 outbreak.
Officials informed that the implementation work of the rail link project is going on satisfactorily and its overall progress is 28.23% and financial progress is 33.21%.
Of the 169 kilometre rail line, train communications from Mawa to Bhanga will be opened along with the Padma Bridge project in the mid next year, they said.
Talking to BSS, Project Director Engineer Golam Fakhruddin A Chowdhury said the project is establishing rail link between Mawa and Bhanga via Janjira and Shibchar through the Padma Multipurpose Bridge.
“The project will be implemented within June, 2024. We have already completed 28.23% of the works. The construction of the rail link is moving fast,” he added.
Under the fast-track project, he said, Bangladesh Railway is implementing the project to connect capital Dhaka with Jessore with a 169 km rail line for Tk39,246.79 crore, with Exim Bank of China providing Tk21,036.70 crore as loan.
The Chinese government-nominated contractor China Railway Group Limited is implementing the project under G2G (Government-to-Government) system, he added.
After completing the project, Fakhruddin said, it will improve accessibility to the capital city with central and south western regions of the country through Padma Bridge, covering new areas of Munshiganj, Shariatpur, Madaripur and Narail districts.
He said the project will establish alternate railway connectivity linking Dhaka-Jessore-Khulna with 212.05 km shorter route and improved operational facilities.
“It will also establish another sub-route of Trans-Asian Railway Network in Bangladesh and introduce national, regional and International Freight and BG container train service as this route will be free from speed and load restriction for carrying containers,” he added.
Fakhruddin, also an additional secretary, said the project will create opportunity to build the second line in this route and connect Barisal and Payra Sea Port in future.
It will contribute in the socio-economic development in that region and thus minimize regional disparity and also contribute GDP growth of approximate 1% in the country’s national economy, he added.
At a glance
The construction work of the Padma Multipurpose Bridge under financing of Bangladesh government is going on and targeted to be completed by mid-2021.
On November 27, the 39th span of the 6.15-kilometre bridge was installed, making 5,850-km of its main structure visible.
The bridge provides four lanes for road traffic on top deck and in bottom deck a Broad-gauge Single Railway Track.
With the view to connect Dhaka with the country’s south-western region within shortest possible period, construction of a rail link between Dhaka and Jessore earned prime importance.
The total route length is around 169 km which has been divided into four sections. They are -- Section-1: Dhaka–Gandaria (3 km); Section-2: Gandaria–Mawa (37 km); Section–3: Mawa–Bhanga Junction–Bhanga (42 km); and Section-4: Bhanga Junction–Jessore (87 km).
To operate trains up to Mawa over Padma Bridge, construction of Section-3 is targeted to be completed by the completion of the main bridge’s construction.
Mawa, on the eastern part of the bridge, will be connected with the existing network of Western Zone of Bangladesh Railway through Bhanga-Faridpur-Pachuria-Rajbari section.
Construction works of the other three sections will also commence at the same time to connect Jessore with Dhaka city via Padma Bridge.