By Swe Oo Wai
Whenever I crossed No 1 Thanlyin bridge by car, I remembered I paid a visit to Thanlyin during childhood from Yangon by water since then known as Thida ferry. While I was taking Thida ferry, I still remembered I was feeding seagulls and reading cartoons with San Shwe Myint character. Something appeared in my memory that at that time Thanlyin did not improve at all yet and Thilawa Special Economic Zone was not even in the dream as well. But now the situations look very different. Yangon and Thanlayin remain together and nothing separates them as No 1 and No 2 Thanlyin bridges have already been instructed. Moreover, with the enormous development of Thilawa SEZ, Thanlyin has developed much more times greater than it was used to be previously. Currently No 3 Thanlyin bridge is under construction and upon completion it will play one of the important parts to develop Yangon and State’s economy.
No 3 Thanlyin bridge project
No 3 Thanlyin bridge is currently being built crossing Bago river linking Thakayta with Thanlyin in Yangon. The construction of No 3 Thanlyin bridge is located at a distance of 125 km from No 1 Thanlyin bridge. The stake driving ceremony of the No 3 Thanlyin bridge was held on 13 February with the expectation of completing the bridge in 2020. Yangon river, Hlaing river, Bago river, Pazuntaung creek, Nga Moe Yeik creek are located in Yangon and its environs. Taking better transport links for economic development into consideration, a bridge was intended to be built crossing Thanlyin.
The tender invitation for the bridge construction project was very transparent, dividing into two sectors—the approach bridge and the main bridge. The tender winners are Japanese companies. Sumitomo Mitsui Construction and Yokogawa Bridge Corporation won the tenders for the approach bridge and the main bridge on Thanlyin side.
Tokyo Construction Co., Ltd won the tender for Thakayta approach bridge. “Bago river crossing bridge (No 3 Thanlyin bridge) is a landmark linking Thanlyin with Thakayta and so The matters relating to the beautiful designs of the bridge and both approach roads were already discussed,” said Deputy Minister U Kyaw Lin of the Ministry of Construction. The length of No 3 Thanlyin bridge is 3,500 metres whose body is Steel Box Grider and its foundation is Steel Pipe Sheet Pile. Each vehicle can withstand 75 tonnes. The length of the main bridge is 1,224 meters. The length of the approach bridge on Thakayta side is 300 metres and that on Thanlyin side 404 metres. The length of the approach of Fly Over Bridge on Thakayta side is 547 metres and that on Thanlyin side 188 metres. The bridge will have a four-lane road with 24 metres in width. Fly Over Bridge will have a two-lane road with 12.5 metres in width (on land). The approach road is 5.57 metres long. One Ramp Bridge with one-lane road will be also built.
Measures to be taken after closing temporary roads
The approach road on Thakayta side will meet near Thakayta roundabout after crossing Shukhintha and Yadana roads. The road from Thanlyin to Thakayta and the road from Shekhintha junction and Thakayta roadabout have been closed from 24 May to the end of August from 9 pm to 5 am according to the Ministry of Construction.
The reason why the roads are temporarily stopped is to install concrete reinforced type steel beams.
“The approach road on Yangon side will meet near the roundabout of Thakayta crossing a lot of roads,” said Yangon Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein during the stake driving ceremony of the bridge. No 3 Thanlyin bridge is under construction and the total cost of the construction of the bridge will be more than USD300 million.
Convenience in travel
Upon completion of No 3 Thanlyin bridge, the transportation of the goods from Thilawa SEZ will be faster and more secure, and the travel of the local people will be smoother and more convenient. It will serve an enormous driving force for enabling Yangon to become a distinct commercial city, contributing to increased job opportunities and regional development. The implementation of a four-lane tarred road from Thanlyin bridge to Thilawa SEZ has already been completed. Once No 3 Thanlyin bridge is finished, it is certain that it will help promote economy, social affairs and investments.
Once we had to take time to cross Yangon river to get to Thanlyin by Thida ferry. However, the images of lack of development in south district of Yangon have been left far behind, and now it’s developing a lot. Translated by Htut Htut (Twantay)