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China-Laos railway completes beam setting of 1st cross-Mekong River bridge

Updated: Apr 24,2020 09:57 AM    Xinhua

VIENTIANE — All the beams of the Luang Prabang cross-Mekong River super major bridge of the China-Laos railway have been installed, according to the Laos-China Railway Co Ltd (LCRC), a joint venture based in Lao capital Vientiane in charge of the construction and operation of the railway.

The LCRC told Xinhua on April 23 that with the last 32-meter prestressed T-beam steadily settling down on the piers on April 23, the beam setting work of the bridge, undertaken by China Railway No. 8 Engineering Group (CREC-8) was successfully completed.

The China-Laos Railway crosses the Mekong River twice to the north of the ancient Lao capital of Luang Prabang, some 230 km north of capital Vientiane. The continuous beam of the Luang Prabang bridge was completed in July 2019, seven months ahead of schedule, while the installation of T-beam began on April 9.

The Ban Ladhan cross-Mekong River super major bridge, also constructed by the CREC-8 closed its continuous beam on April 1.

The Luang Prabang cross-Mekong River bridge, some 230 km north of Lao capital Vientiane, has a total length of 1,458.9 meters and is composed of 28 span T-beams and six spans continuous beams. It is the most difficult and most technically complex bridge on the entire railway.

To ensure the successful completion of the bridge erection, the CREC-8 beam manufacturing and installing department made careful preparation, formulated a special construction plan and closely monitored the construction.

According to project manager Zhang Jiahong, amid the COVID-19 outbreak, the project department in Luang Prabang has carried out the beam installation work while paying close attention to epidemic prevention and control.

Taking advantage of the experiences of epidemic prevention and control in China, the Chinese engineering team took multiple measures, including strictly implementing the safety production management system, to successfully complete the tasks of beam fabrication, transportation and installment before the rainy season sets in.

The China-Laos Railway is a strategic docking project between the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative and Laos' strategy to convert from a landlocked country to a land-linked hub.

The 414.332-km railway, with 198-km tunnels and 62-km bridges, will run from Boten border gate in northern Laos, bordering China, to Vientiane with an operating speed of 160 km per hour.