Bangladesh to open Padma Bridge railway next month

Bangladesh’s Padma Bridge is seen as a “symbol of the nation’s glory” (Nahian Bin Shafiq/CC BY-SA 4.0)
The railway that will use the bottom deck of Bangladesh’s awe-inspiring Padma bridge is to be commissioned next month, according to reports in the Chinese media.

A 172km railway, which will use the bridge to connect the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka and the city of Bhanga, was built by China Railway Group (CREC) and funded by the Export-Import Bank of China.

The bridge itself was built by CREC subsidiary China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group. The company won the contract in 2014 and, with it, set a record for the longest bridge built by a Chinese firm outside China.

A Padma bridge truss being lifted into position (Azim Khan Ronnie/CC BY-SA 4.0)

The Bangladeshi government last week launched the first train on the line from Dhaka’s central Kamalapur Railway Station. The test used some of the 100 coaches that have been procured from CRRC Tangshan Co.

The test train carried Nurul Islam Sujan, the minister for railways, along with officials, politicians, and journalists.

Sujan said Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh’s prime minister, would inaugurate the service on 10 October.

According to the People’s Daily, CREC workers welcomed the train waving flags and setting off fireworks when the train was passing a station near the Padma Bridge.

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