Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader on Thursday virtually inaugurated newly built 35 bridges constructed under the Western Bangladesh Bridge Improvement Project and two more bridges with the government funding.
Of the bridges, 19 were constructed at a cost Taka 593 crore under the package-1 of Rangpur Road Zone and 16 at a cost of Taka 350 core under the package-2 of Rajshahi Road Zone.
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Besides, two bridges - Buri Teesta and Shantipur-Laltai-Bhata - constructed with the government funding under the Rangpur Road Zone were also opened to traffic.
Speaking at the inaugural function, Quader said the government planned to build 82 bridges under Western Bangladesh Bridge Improvement Project at a cost of about Taka 3,000 crore.
"Construction works of 61 bridges (under the project) have already been completed. Of them, 25 were opened earlier and 35 opened to traffic today," he said.
Quader, also ruling Awami League general secretary, said construction works of the remaining 22 bridges are on progress.
He said these bridges will play an effective role in establishing road network among the South Asian countries and connecting with SASEC Corridor, Asian Highway and, BIMSTEC and SAARC highways.
These will also play a supportive role in transforming Bangladesh into a developed country by making remarkable change in the country's national economy as well as establishing safe, developed and cost effective communication system between the capital Dhaka and all other parts of the country, Quader added.
Japan Ambassador to Bangladesh Ito Naoki, Chief Representative of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Bangladesh Office Yoho Hayakaya, Road Transport and Highways Division (RTHD) Secretary Md Nazrul Islam, Roads and Highways Department (RHD) Chief Engineer Md Abdus Sabur and Project Director of Western Bangladesh Bridge Improvement Project Khan Mohammad Qamrul Ahsan joined the inaugural function through videoconferencing, among others.