Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday laid the foundation stone for building the country's longest bridge—Dhubri (Assam)-Phulbari (Meghalaya) bridge over Brahmaputra river, which will provide a third alternative link to Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura and Barak valley region of Assam with the rest of the country as well as reduce the time and distance to travel to Bhutan and Bangladesh.
The 19-km long four-lane bridge to be built at a cost of Rs5,000 crore once completed will be double the length of the current longest bridge in India —the 9.15 km long Dhola–Sadiya Bridge, also referred to as the Bhupen Hazarika Setu, over Brahmaputra river, reports the Times of India.
Dhubri-Phulbari Bridge will be the eighth bridge over the river.
The bridge will reduce travel distance from 205 km to 19 km and travel time from six hours to 20 minutes and will serve more than two million commuters. The contract has been bagged by Larsen & Toubro Ltd. Heavy Civil Infrastructure IC Larsen & Toubro Ltd with September, 2028 as the target date for completion.
Besides improving connectivity to urban market and supply chains, The bridge will improve the regional connectivity by connecting Bangladesh with Bhutan through Dalu - in Meghalaya on India-Bangladesh border and Hatisar - in Assam on India-Bhutan border via Tura, Phulbari, Dhubri, Srirampur and Samthaibari.
Speaking on the occasion union minister for road transport, highways and MSMEs Nitin Gadkari said that the demand for a bridge over river Brahmaputra, between Dhubri in Assam and Phulbari in Meghalaya is 10 years old.
"With this, distance between Dhburi and Phulabri will be shortened by 203 kms. Moreover Assam and Meghalaya will have a direct connection with West Bengal through this bridge and 55 km-long road construction from Serampore in West Bengal to Dhubri in Assam will begin this October. It will save the distance and time needed to travel to Bhutan and Bangladesh," Gadkari said.
The bridge with 100 km design speed will be earthquake resistant and have solar grid lighting. There will be a control room for Emergency Response System and Flood Monitoring System and FAST tag tolling with 24x7 CCTV cameras on gantry to track vehicles.