JICA’s support for bridge construction
In response to the request from Bhutan government, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) agreed to support to conduct a survey for reconstruction of three bridges along the Semtokha – Trashigang Highway.
The three bridges are Chuzomsa zam and Nikachu zam in Wangdue and Zalamchu zam in Trongsa. The three bridges will be replaced with higher load carrying capacity and carriageway width of 7.0 metre to enable transportation of heavy electro-mechanical equipment for hydropower projects.
The Preparatory Survey Team fielded by JICA arrived Bhutan last month which aims to collect data and provide a basic document necessary to appraise the project to the JICA and Government of Japan.
During the survey the team will evaluate the appropriateness of the project, and agree on its objectives and benefits. The team will then prepare outline design, cost estimates and agree on the activities to be carried out by both the parties concerning the basic concept of the project.
The team is currently carrying out detail geotechnical investigation, topographical and profile survey at the bridge sites.
With increase in traffic volume, freight tonnage, and safety of the road users it is critical that existing bridges that have outlived their design life are strengthened to have safer and reliable road transport network that meets the growing demand of transportation.
These bridges are currently used with restricted loading capacity and carriageway width. The reconstruction of bridges are expected to be started by end of 2015.