The new bridge has been installed in Sonprayag in the north Indian state of Uttarakhand, at the foot of the Himalayas. Although remote, the site attracts many visitors as it is a key part of the route taken each year by hundreds of thousands of pilgrims trekking to the Kedarnath Temple, which is some 3,600m above sea level.
In June 2013 - the middle of the pilgrimage season - a multi-day rainstorm centred on Uttarakhand caused devastating floods and landslides. The government reported more 5,700 people dead or missing, with more than 100,000 airlifted to safety. The floods caused extensive property damage, including the destruction of the existing bridge at Sonprayag, though there was only minimal damage to the temple.
A temporary bridge was soon erected at the site of the destroyed crossing, but was washed away by floods on two occasions, most recently in June 2015.
The Acrow structure was selected by the Uttarakhand Disaster Recovery Project team along with the Indian infrastructure and project consultancy company Intercontinental Consulting & Technology Company (ICT). The bridge, which has a 60m clear span, was customised with modular components to address local conditions.
Unlike the previous crossings, the new structure can take two lanes of traffic, allowing far more capacity for tourists and local residents alike.
The pilgrim season continues until early November, with an anticipated half a million pilgrims expected to complete the trek to the temple this year.