New Delhi: Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw today shared a set of pictures of the new Pamban bridge in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu. This is India’s first vertical lift railway sea bridge, which is expected to be ready for use by March next year.
The new 2-km-long bridge, linking the island of Rameswaram in the Arabian Sea to the mainland, will replace the existing 104-year-old structure. The bridge will have a 63-metre stretch, which will lift up vertically to allow passage to small ships. In the images shared by Mr Vaishnaw, we can see workers and machinery deployed at the site under a clear, blue sky.
Earlier, the Ministry of Railways had shared some snapshots of the new Pamban bridge via a Twitter post. Calling it an engineering marvel, the ministry said, “This dual-track state-of-the-art bridge will be the country’s first vertical lift railway sea bridge and is expected to be completed by March 2022.”
The construction began on November 9, 2019, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone in March that year. Railways hopes the new bridge, being built at an estimated cost of ₹ 250 crore, will help the national transporter run trains at higher speeds, carry more weight and increase the volume of traffic.
The bridge has 101 piers and it will be 3-metre higher than the existing one, providing more navigational air clearance for vessels to pass.
The existing Pamban bridge was India’s first sea bridge and became operational in 1914. Its construction was completed in three years and it had the distinction of being India’s longest sea bridge until the opening of the Bandra-Worli Sea Link in Mumbai, Maharashtra, in 2010.