The much-awaited Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL), which is now the longest sea bridge in India, has finally opened to the public. An inauguration ceremony to mark this milestone was held in Mumbai, in the state of Maharashtra, on 12 January 2024.
The new bridge connects the cities of Mumbai and Navi Mumbai with a six-lane road of about 22 km, reducing travel time across the strait from more than an hour to just under 20 minutes. It is expected to alleviate chronic traffic congestion in Mumbai and improve connectivity between the two cities.
A project by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), the MTHL was supported by the government of Japan and was developed under the ‘Mumbai Trans-Harbour Link Project (I)-(III)’ using an official development assistance (ODA) loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
According to JICA, the ‘orthotropic steel deck box girder’ technology was adopted for the first time in India for the construction of this project. The method, which has been widely used in Japan, makes it possible to extend the spacing between the pillars that lift the bridge girders further than conventional methods, as well as to reduce the number of supports needed. Additionally, since the bridge girders can be erected in a shorter amount of time, the overall time required for construction and the impact on the surrounding environment are also reduced.
Besides the MTHL, JICA said the agency is also working on other infrastructure projects such as the Mumbai Metro, and will continue to support the development of the region.
Image 1: MMRDA (via JICA)
Image 2: JICA