Amin, Okui, Bhuiyan (eds.)
Detailed design of the Padma Multipurpose Bridge, Bangladesh – An overview W.K. Wheeler, R.J. Aves & C.J. Tolley
AECOM, Sydney, Australia
SMEC International, Canada
Md. R Islam
Bangladesh Bridge Authority, Government of Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh
ABSTRACT: The Padma Multipurpose Bridge Design Project comprises a new fixed crossing of the Padma River in Bangladesh, which will consist of a new bridge approximately 6.15km long across the Padma River, approach viaducts, major river training works and approximately 13.6km of approach roads and bridge end facilities, including toll plazas, service areas and offices. The bridge – the longest in South Asia – will connect the southwest of the country with the capital Dhaka, boosting business and the movement of goods between the country’s second seaport, Mongla, and the rest of the country. This paper gives an overview of the project components and describes the design development process from the initial 2005 Feasibility Study to the current design, including the coordination of the multidisciplinary inputs, the extensive site investigations and survey program, determination of the design criteria and the development of harmonised prequalification and bidding documents leading to the tender process. The processes followed in satisfying the essential safeguard compliance requirements are also outlined.
1 INTRODUCTION 1.1 General The three major rivers of Bangladesh - the Padma, Brahmaputra-Jamuna and the Meghna - divide the country into four principal regions of north-west, north central, eastern and south-west regions. The Padma River separates the south-west region from the capital city and requires time-consuming ferry crossings to major destinations. At present, transportation of passengers and freight across the river is by ferries and to a lesser extent by launches and manually-operated boats, but their services are grossly inadequate in both capacity and service level. The existing ferry services involve long and unpredictable waiting times at terminals that lack basic service facilities. Additionally, they are prone to suspension or cancellation due to flood, fog and inclement weather conditions. The proposed Padma Bridge is expected to make cross-Padma transport more reliable and drastically reduce the travel time and cost to cross the river. The Padma Bridge is a multipurpose bridge designed to carry four lanes of highway traffic, a single freight rail track, a high pressure gas main and various communication facilities. The Padma Bridge is on the Asian Highway Route A-1 and Trans-Asian Railway Route. When the railway will be effectively connected, the Padma Bridge will contribute to the multimodal international transport network for the Eastern Region of the Indian sub-continent and substantial benefit to the Government of Bangladesh (GoB) for bi-lateral cargo movement between India and Bangladesh. Figure 1 shows the general layout of the project which comprises a new bridge approximately 6.15km long across the Padma River, approach viaducts, major river training works and approximately 13.6km of approach roads and bridge end facilities, including toll plazas, service areas and offices The key issues of the Project include: • Engineering issues such as complex river training works in a river subject to substantial annual flooding, deep pile foundations in loose alluvial deposits subject to extreme scour depths and construction of a major bridge;
Responsible handling of social and environmental impacts arising from the Project, including land acquisition and resettlement impacts on affected people; and environmental impacts on regional hydrology and ecosystem; and Coordination among organisations involved in the Project, including the...