On Thursday (24 November) , Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) announced that the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL) project has achieved a new milestone with the installation of the 12th orthotropic steel deck (OSD) span.
The 12th OSD is about 74m long and 700 MT weighing span and was erected overnight by MMRDA.
MTHL is a 22-km-long sea link that will connect South Mumbai to Navi Mumbai, and is touted to be India's longest sea bridge, once completed.
MMRDA has awarded civil work contracts in three packages for the MTHL project.
According to MMRDA, construction on the bridge is progressing quickly and work on package-2 is 86 per cent finished.
“The work on the MTHL project is progressing at a fast pace. Our team has achieved another milestone by successfully completing the erection of the 12th orthotropic steel deck span in Package 2 of MTHL. The span, which is about 74 metres long and weighs 700 tonnes, was erected overnight. Package 2 has now achieved 86 per cent work completion,” said an MMRDA official, reports Midday.
The steel deck super structures are being used for the first time in the country. They will handle the vehicle load more efficiently and improve the load-carrying capability of the bridge when compared to a concrete superstructure. They are also lighter than concrete girders.
The steel spans are produced at workshops in Japan, Vietnam, Taiwan, etc. before shipped to India. This allows for faster construction and reduces on-site deck-related tasks.
The MTHL will cover 22 km, including 16.5 km over the sea and 5.5 km on land.
MTHL reduces the travel time between South Mumbai and Navi Mumbai to just 20 minutes from the present two hours.
The bridge would include six lanes with interchanges in Sewri, Shivaji Nagar, and Chirle, Navi Mumbai, along NH-4B.
The link will provide direct access to Nhava Sheva Port, Mumbai-Goa Highway, Mumbai-Pune Expressway and the Navi Mumbai International Airport.
A cost estimate of Rs 17,800 crore has been given for the project.
Work on the project got off to a start in April 2018 with the contractor conducting soil testing in the Nhava Sheva creek.
The project's cost jumped from Rs 4,500 crore in 2005 to Rs 9,360 crore in 2013 and Rs 11,000 crore in 2014. Now, it is pegged at Rs 17,800 crore.
The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is financing 85 per cent of the project. The loan has been offered with a 10-year grace and a 30-year repayment period.
The sea bridge is equipped with innovative technology which will allow authorities to monitor traffic on the overpass from the city's central traffic control centre using an array of CCTV cameras.
It is envisaged that it will boost the economic growth of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region and significantly increase the connectivity between Mumbai and Navi Mumbai.
MTHL is expected to open in December 2023, according to Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.
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