Howrah Bridge is a bridge with a suspended span over the Hooghly River in West Bengal, India. Commissioned in 1943, the bridge was originally named the New Howrah Bridge, because it replaced a pontoon bridge at the same location linking the two cities of Howrah and Kolkata (Calcutta). On 14 June 1965 it was renamed Rabindra Setu after the great Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore, who was the first Indian and Asian Nobel laureate. It is still popularly known as the Howrah Bridge.
Howrah Bridge is one of the most celebrated landmarks of Kolkata. Situated on River Hooghly, it serves as the lifeline of the city. The construction process of the Howrah Bridge initiated in the year 1939, to bridge up the gap between Howrah and Kolkata. Previously, a pontoon bridge was built by Sir Bradford Leslie in 1874. However, that bridge was redesigned and Howrah Bridge was constructed in 1942. It was opened for public use from February 1943. It took around 7 long years to complete the construction. In 1920, six engineers were recruited for a permanent bridge between Kolkata and Howrah. During the first term of the committee, Sir Rajendra Nath Mukherjee was the Chief Engineer for the project. Tata Steel supplied the steel.
Howrah Bridge is counted among the busiest cantilever bridge across the globe. It is reckoned as an outstanding engineering work accomplished by the British. Amazingly, the entire structure of the bridge does not include any nuts or bolts. The bridge was made from 26500 tons of high-tensile steel, supported by 2 piers. Each pier of the Bridge is around 90 meters above the road. At the time of its building, Howrah Bridge was acknowledged as the third longest cantilever bridge. Presently, it is the sixth longest bridge of its type in the world.
Howrah Bridge features two sections that covered the whole bridge connecting both the sides. The bridge has also been illuminated by electricity. Howrah Bridge boasts a length of around 1528 feet and it has a width of about 62 feet. There are wide pavements on either side of the bridge, which are 7 feet wide. The road of 48 feet with 8 lanes serves commuters and traffics all round the day. The Height of Howrah Bridge from the riverbed is 29 feet. Howrah Bridge bears a regular traffic load of roughly 90,000 vehicles and countless pedestrians. On June 14, 1965, the bridge was renamed after the Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore and famously called Rabindra Setu.