Ten civil engineering firms have bid for the construction of the new Sonepur – Digha Bridge in Bihar on the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) mode after India’s Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) opened technical bids on Monday.
This 6 lane bridge over the Ganga River will be built on the western-side of the existing Sonepur – Digha Rail & Road Bridge (J.P. Setu) which was inaugurated in March 2016 to link Patna and Saran districts (view on Google Maps).
The total length of the project is 6.925 km which includes a 4.556 km long extra-dosed bridge and 2.369 kms of approach roads. Its construction was approved by the Central Government’s cabinet on December 27, 2023 with a total estimated cost of Rs. 3064.45 crore.
MoRTH had invited bids for its civil construction in January 2023 with a Rs. 2635.89 crore construction estimate and 42 month deadline.
- Ansal Highway Infratech Pvt. Ltd.
- Dineshchandra R.Agrawal Infracon Pvt. Ltd. – YFC Projects JV
- Gammon Engineers and Contractors Pvt. Ltd.
- Kalpataru Projects International Ltd. (KPIL)
- Larsen and Toubro Ltd. (L&T)
- Ashoka Buildcon Ltd. (ABL)
- Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd. (RVNL)
- R & C Infraengineers Pvt. Ltd.
- Spica Projects and Infrastructures Pvt. Ltd.
- SP Singla Constructions Pvt. Ltd. (SPCPL)
MoRTH’s Brief Scope: Construction of 6 lane H.L./Extra-dosed Cable Bridge on River Ganga parallel to Western side (180 meter upstream) of Digha- Sonepur Rail-cum-Road Bridge at Patna on Ganga River on NH-139W in the state of Bihar on EPC mode
The bids have now been sent for technical evaluation which can take a couple months to complete. When that is done, the financial bids of the technically qualified bidders will be opened to reveal who’s the lowest bidder and most likely contractor.
The appointed contractor will also be responsible for maintaining the bridge for a period of three and a half years.
The government’s Press Information Bureau (PIB) page for the bridge lists out the following details on the project’s need and benefits:
Digha (situated at Patna & South Bank of Ganga River) and Sonepur (North Bank of Ganga River in Saran District) are presently connected by a Rail Cum Road Bridge for movement of light vehicles only. Therefore, the present road cannot be used for transport of goods and commodities which is a major economic blockade. The constraint will be removed by providing this bridge, between Digha and Sonepur and; goods and commodities can be transported once the bridge is constructed, unleashing the economic potential of the region.
This bridge will provide direct connectivity from Patna to Golden quadrilateral corridor via NH-139 at Aurangabad and Sonepur (NH-31), Chhapra, Motihari (East-West corridor old NH-27), Bettiah (NH-727) in the Northern side of Bihar. This Project is a part of Buddha circuit. lt provides better connectivity to Buddha Stupa at Vaishali and Keshariya. Also, NH-139W provides connectivity to very famous Areraj Someshwar Nath Temple and proposed Viraat Ramayan Mandir (largest religious monument in the world) at Kesariya in the East Champaran District.
This project is falling in Patna and will provide better connectivity to North Bihar and South part of the Bihar through State Capital. The Bridge will make the movement of vehicles faster and easier resulting in overall development of the region. The Economic analysis results have shown an EIRR of 17.6% in base case and 13.1% is worst case which may be attributed to the savings in distance and time travelled.
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