|Abstract: ||The Bandra-Worli Sea Link is a marvel
of engineering technology and has also led to considerable easing of traffic in
IT is gigantic. It is majestic. It is an engineering marvel and an architectural wonder too. The first-of-its-kind in India (first bridge to be constructed in open-sea conditions), the 5.6-km-long, eight-lane, approximately Rs 1,600-crore Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL), which has now been renamed as the Rajiv Gandhi Sea Link, is an engineering marvel that aims to ease traffic in Mumbai, India’s commercial capital.
The construction is a miracle on the Arabian Sea that has an imposing presence on the Western horizon of Mumbai. One can imagine the strength and might of the bridge given the fact that it weighs nearly 50,000 African elephants and the length of steel wires used in the project is equivalent to the circumference of the Earth. And it has made the difference: the distance which earlier took nearly 45 minutes – from Bandra till Worli if one uses the old road – now takes just eight minutes.
It is for the first time that cable-stay bridges have been attempted on open seas in India. Coupled with the fact that the aesthetically designed pylons have an extremely complex geometry and one of the longest spans for concrete deck, the challenges encountered were indeed formidable. With its cable-stayed towers soaring gracefully skywards, the bridge was constructed by Hindustan Construction Co Ltd (HCC), an engineering, construction, infrastructure and integrated urban development and management giant and designed by UK-based Dar Consultants for Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC). It has today emerged as one of the prominent landmarks of Mumbai and also a popular tourism destination.