The government will simultaneously open 150 new bridges and overpasses in 37 districts of the country next month which is likely to improve the road connectivity further.
The Roads and Highways Department (RHD) has already completed the work of the bridges under different projects and recently sent a summary to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Sources at the RHD said that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina may give her schedule to inaugurate the bridges through videoconferencing in the first week of September.
Syed Moinul Hasan, Chief Engineer of RHD, said they have sent the summary to the Prime Minister’s Office through the Road Transport and Bridges Ministry. “Probably, the inauguration ceremony will be held in September. The schedule and other details will be announced soon,” he added.
The longest bridge is 558 metres in Brahmanbaria, followed by one 403-metre long in Sunamganj awaiting inauguration, according to the officials.
It will be among a series of development works the government is going to inaugurate before the upcoming national polls.
In the pipeline of inauguration, there are a number of big projects like Karnaphuli underwater tunnel, Dhaka elevated expressway, metro line-6 (from Agargaon to Motijheel section) and Dhaka-Bhanga, Khulna-Mongla, Akhaura-Agartala and Chattogram-Cox's Bazar rail lines, and Third Terminal of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.
According to sources, a total of 140 bridges and 14 overpasses of the RHD are ready to be inaugurated. The number of overpasses might be revised before the RHD finalises the list. The RHD officials will hold a meeting next week over the issue.
The bridges with a total length of 9,722 metres have been built in 37 districts in eight zones of RHD. It cost them Tk 3,429.66 crore. Many of these are the replacements of old bridges.
The newly constructed bridges are under several road and communication projects. Some of the projects are still at implementation stage. Of the projects, three are foreign funded--two by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and one by the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The rest of the projects are being financed by the government.
Of the bridges and overpasses ready for opening, 51 bridges and 14 overpasses have been built under projects implemented with foreign funds.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on November 7 last year inaugurated 100 newly constructed bridges in 25 districts of the country. The total length of the bridges was 5,494 metres and the construction cost was Tk 8,79.61 crore.