The overall project is 72% complete, said contractor Webuild, which is building the bridge in a joint venture with IHI Infrastructure Systems.

The new bridge will connect both sides of the Danube River in the Galati-Braila region, reducing crossing times for 7,000 vehicles every day and avoiding the use of a ferry. The project has been commissioned by state company CNAIR on behalf of Romania’s Ministry of Infrastructure. It is 1,975m long with a 1,120m main deck. There will be four lanes, an emergency lane, and cycling and pedestrian paths. Each side has an access viaduct 90m long and the project also includes a 220m viaduct to cross over the Braila-Galati railway and 21km of new road network.

Braila Bridge under construction

Webuild said that the project has proven to be as challenging as it has been innovative. The raising of the bridge’s steel deck took place this summer, marking one of the most challenging phases. More than 250 workers and technicians were involved in installing 86 sections of the deck, each weighing 260t. They developed a specific method to raise and set each one. A lifting beam near the factory where the sections were made placed them on barges, which then travelled 7km along the Danube. Once they arrived under the bridge, the sections were lifted to their final position on permanent hangers. 

Earlier in the year, workers raised and set in place the bridge’s two supporting cables created by the intertwining of more than 18,000 steel fibres. Their combined weight is 6,775t.