Padma Bridge is getting busier day by day, resulting in a record amount of toll collection.
Friday marked the highest amount of toll collection – Tk3,16,53,200 – from Padma Bridge in a day since its inauguration last week.
On that day, a total of 26,398 vehicles paid the toll while crossing the bridge. Meanwhile, the toll of Tk 69,81,880 was collected on the first day on the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Expressway at the Dhaka-Mawa-Bhanga route.
According to the Roads and Highways Department (RHD), 13,801 vehicles crossed the Padma Bridge at Mawa end – toll of Tk 1,65,42,100 was collected. 12,597 vehicles crossed through Jazira – toll of Tk 1,51,11,100 was collected.
Earlier, after the inauguration on June 26, more than 61,000 vehicles were plying a day. Around Tk 2.45 crore toll was collected. However, 75 percent of the vehicles that crossed the bridge that day were motorcycles.
Motorcycle crossings across the bridge were banned from June 27. As a result, the movement of vehicles and the collection of tolls reduced. However, the number of vehicles increased again on Friday.
According to the Bangladesh Bridge Authority (BBA), 51,316 vehicles plied on the Padma Bridge on the first day (June 26). Tk 2,09,40,300 toll was collected. Toll collection on the second day was Tk 2,75,13,600.
The Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges fixed the toll for a car or an SUV at Tk750; pickup van at Tk1,200; microbus at Tk1,300; minibus (up to 31 seats) at Tk1,400 and medium bus (32 seats or more) at Tk2,000 and motorcycle at Tk100.
In addition, the rate has been set at Tk1,600 for a mini truck (up to five tonnes); Tk2,100 for a medium truck (5-8 tonnes); Tk2,800 for a medium truck (8-11 tonnes); Tk5,500 for truck (up to three-axle) and Tk6,000 for trailer (up to four axles). An additional Tk1,500 will be charged for each axle for a trailer larger than four axles.
On the other hand, the government has started collecting tolls from vehicles plying the 55km-long expressway on Friday. The toll rate for the Expressway ranges from Tk30 to Tk1,690, according to a circular issued by the Road Transport and Bridges Ministry on June 29.
The toll of Tk 69,81,880 was collected on the first day. Of this, a total of 41,714 vehicles crossed. Among these, 26,064 vehicles crossed the toll plaza near Dhaleshwari Bridge – toll of Tk 45,77,240 has been collected. Besides, 15,650 vehicles crossed Bhanga – toll of Tk 24,04,640 was collected.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in March 2020 inaugurated the four-lane expressway built at a cost of Tk11,003 crore.