Amochhu bridge on the brink of com­ple­tion

Business Bhutan - - Nation - Kr­ishna Ghal­ley from Phuentshol­ing

The much-awaited Amochhu bridge, whose com­ple­tion was sched­uled in May end, has been fur­ther de­layed by an­other week.

Pend­ing works as of now in­clude black­top­ping and other elec­tri­cal works. The Nu. 245mn bridge has missed sev­eral dead­lines since works started in 2009. More than three con­trac­tors have worked on the steel arch bridge, an im­por­tant line that con­nects the high­way from Phuentshol­ing to Samtse and vice versa.

The chief en­gi­neer of the De­part­ment of Roads, Dorji Wangdi ad­mit­ted that black­top­ping and elec­tri­cal fit­ting works re­main to be done al­though the main works are com­plete.

He said the re­luc­tance of the con­trac­tors to work on small stretch has caused the de­lay. How­ever, the work has been ten­dered out and a con­trac­tor has agreed to carry out the black­top­ping work.

“We have ne­go­ti­ated and are wait­ing to be en­dorsed,” he said. Around 240-me­ter-long stretch of black­top­ping has to be done.

“Since all the re­sources have to be mo­bi­lized for small stretch of work, no con­trac­tor is will­ing to take the job. That’s why the cost es­ca­lates,” Dorji Wangdi said.

Ac­cord­ing to the en­gi­neer, it would take around four days to com­plete black­top­ping of the road. The ma­te­ri­als for elec­tri­cal fit­ting works along the bridge have also ar­rived at the site and the work will start soon.

Project Man­ager Tsh­er­ing Wangchuk said the bridge will be com­plete in the next few days. The post ten­sion­ing works have been com­pleted and the load test­ing has also been done. The struc­tural works have also been com­pleted, in­clud­ing post ten­sion­ing work.

Mean­while, the bridge is the coun­try’s first three di­men­sional (3D), par­a­bolic semi-through arch bridge and it would con­nect Dorokha, Dumtey, Denchukha, Dumtey, and Haa to Phuentshol­ing af­ter Samtse.

The semi-through type and steel-arched Amochhu bridge was first sched­uled for com­ple­tion in Septem­ber 2011. How­ever, it missed about five dead­lines, the last be­ing Au­gust 2017. Two joint ven­ture con­trac­tors were also ter­mi­nated be­tween 2009 and 2016 as they could not com­plete the tar­geted works on time.

Once com­plete, the bridge would be the longest per­ma­nent (con­crete) bridge in the coun­try and will link the 58-km Phuentshol­ingSamtse high­way. The bridge con­nects Purbey in Phuentshol­ing side and Tad­ing gewog in Samtse. Once the bridge con­nects Phuentshol­ing and Samtse, it is also ex­pected to re­duce has­sle for trav­el­ers who use the In­dian high­ways to travel from Phuentshol­ing to Samtse and vice versa.

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