Arch of World's Highest Chenab Rail Bridge in J&K Completed

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The Indian Railways on Monday achieved yet another milestone by completing the final arch of the world’s highest railway bridge over river Chenab, here.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a video message said that this is a very proud moment for every Indian and the view of the bridge would fill every Indian’s heart with delight.

As the last segment was placed on the arch by a cable crane, the workmen on the bridge started chanting Vande Matram and shook hands with each other.

Officials present, told that this development will pave way for the completion of the long-overdue Kashmir rail track, enabling trains from Kanyakumari to reach Kashmir.

The bridge is said to be the highest in the world crossing the height of China’s Duge Bridge on the Beipan river.

The Chenab railway bridge, an engineering marvel, is 359m above the river bed level which connects Kashmir with the rest of the nation minimising the travelling time to Kashmir up to 5 hours.

The construction of the bridge took more than 10 years which is 1315m long connecting Bakkal and Kauri regions on both sides of the bridge.

The bridge can withstand the wind of speed up to 266 Km/hr and is designed for blast load in consultation with DRDO. The bridge can bear the earthquake tremors with the highest intensity of zone-V.

Notably, the aerial distance to Pakistan from the bridge is just 65 Km.

Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, CEO & Chairman of Railways Suneet Sharma, GM Northern Railway Ashutosh Gangal & other senior officials were present on the occasion.


Chenab Bridge, the world's highest railway bridge, part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project (USBRL), set an important construction milestone today with completion of the steel arch of the iconic Chenab Bridge. This was one of the most difficult part of the bridge over Chenab. This achievement is a major leap towards the completion of the 111 long winding stretch from Katra to Banihal. It is arguably the biggest civil-engineering challenge faced by any railway project in India in recent history. The last piece of metal was fitted at the highest point today and joined the two arms of the arch that currently stretch towards each other from both the banks of the river. This completed the shape of the arch that will then loom over the treacherous Chenab, flowing some 359 metres below. After completion of the arch work, removal of the stay cables, filling of the concrete in the arch rib, erection of the steel trestle, launching of the viaduct and track laying work will be taken up.

Salient Features of the Arch of the iconic Chenab Bridge:

Indian Railways is constructing the iconic Arch Bridge on River Chenab as a part of the USBRL project to connect the Kashmir valley to the rest of the nation.
This bridge is 1315m long.
This is the highest Railway Bridge in the world being 359m above the river bed level.
It will be 35 meters higher than the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris (France).

Construction of Bridge involved fabrication of 28,660 MT steel, 10 Lakh Cum Earthwork, 66,000 Cum Concrete and 26 Km motorable roads.
Arch consists of steel boxes. Concrete will be filled in boxes of the Arch to improve stability.
Overall weight of Arch is 10,619 MT.
Erection of the members of arch by overhead cable cranes done for first time on Indian Railways.
The most sophisticated ‘Tekla’ software used for structural detailing.
Structural steel suitable for -10°C to 40°C temperature.
Certain features are tabulated below:

1. Client: Northern Railway
2. Executing Agency: M/s Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd.
3. Cost of Bridge: 1486 Cr.
4. Contractor: M/s Chenab Bridge Project Undertaking [Ultra-AFCONS-VSL(JV)]
5. Total length of bridge:
6. Number of spans: 17 nos.
7. Length of Main arch span: 467m (linear); 550m (curvilinear)
8. Design life of the bridge: 120 years
9. Design speed: 100 kmph
10. Total Steel Fabrication: 28660 MT (approx)
11. Design wind speed: 266 kmph
12. Designers:
A. Viaduct & Foundations: M/s WSP (Finland)
B. Arch: M/s Leonhart, Andra and Partners (Germany)
C. Foundation Protection: Indian Institute of Science Bangalore
13. Proof Consultant:
A. Foundation & Foundation Protection: M/s URS, UK
B. Superstructure of Viaduct & Arch: M/s COWI, UK
14. Slope Stability Analysis: (Independent Consultant) M/s ITASCA, USA
15. Slope Stability Analysis: Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi
16. Seismic Analysis: Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi & Roorkee

Bridge designed to withstand high wind speed up to 266 Km/Hour.
Bridge designed for blast load in consultation with DRDO for the first time in India.
Bridge designed to bear earthquake forces of highest intensity zone-V in India.
Bridge will remain operational at restricted speed of 30 Km/Hour even after removal of one pier/trestle.
Bridge will remain operational at restricted speed of 30 Km/Hour even after removal of one pier/trestle.
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