The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) engineering marvel, Atal Tunnel, built in Rohtang in Himachal Pradesh, received the Indian Building Congress’ (IBC) ‘Best Infrastructure Project’ award in New Delhi .
More than thirty state-of-the-art infrastructure projects were nominated for the award. The IBC jury selected the strategic tunnel as the ‘Best Project for Excellence in Built Environment’ in 2021.
Director General of the BRO, Lt General Rajeev Chaudhry, received the award during the 25th annual convention of the IBC for the achievement of the BRO in constructing this tunnel connecting Manali to the Lahaul-Spiti valley.
Speaking on the occasion, Lt General Chaudhry said that the tunnel, besides offering the armed forces a strategic advantage by providing an alternate link to the critical Ladakh sector, has also been a boon for the residents of Lahaul and Spiti District in Himachal Pradesh.
The region has seen an unprecedented increase in tourist footfalls, and the valley and state have seen exponential growth in the socioeconomic sphere in less than a year, he added.
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT ATAL TUNNEL
The tunnel, built using the New Austrian Tunnelling Method (NATM), was dedicated to the nation by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 3, 2020.
It is equipped with a semi-transverse ventilation system, where large fans separately circulate air throughout the tunnel. For evacuation during emergencies, an emergency tunnel has been integrated into the tunnel cross-section beneath the main carriageway.
Fires inside the tunnel will be controlled within an area of 200 metres, and fire hydrants are provided at specific locations throughout the tunnel.
Pollution sensors continuously monitor the air quality in the tunnel, and if the air quality is below the desired level, fresh air is injected into the tunnel via two heavy-duty fans on each side of the tunnel.