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The New Nile cable stayed bridge

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The New Nile Bridge is a cable stayed bridge which will align at 500 metres upstream of Nalubaale Dam with river width of 300 metres.The 525 metre-long bridge has a central span of 290 metres, end spans of 135 metres and 100 metres on the east and west banks respectively.

The bridge’s foundation consists of 1.5 metres and 2.0 metres diameter piles which are embedded approximately 14-23 metres deep into hard rock.  The new 1.83km long asphalt approach road has three at-grade junctions at Nile Breweries, Nytil and Jinja round-about to allow interchange of traffic to the existing road network.

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At a cost of US $129m, and with an estimated design life of 120 years, the new bridge is aimed at relieving traffic from the existing deteriorating bridge that was constructed over 60 years back by the British colonial government, improving communication on the Northern Corridor Route, a major link for Uganda and its landlocked Central African neighbors. “The Bridge’s picturesque features and strategic location near the source of the Nile will present tourist and resort advantages to the benefit of local and international investors,” says Lawrence Pario, Head Bridges and Structures, Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA).

The New Nile Bridge uniqueness is in it being the longest single plane cable configuration with a water proof deck on the entire African Continent. The bridge deck has a 7 metres wide dual two-way carriageway with a pedestrian walk way of 2.25 metres wide on both ends;complete with street lighting facilities and a digital health monitoring system that monitors the load of the traffic passing, stresses and strains in the cable, and communicates the distresses which will signal maintenance requirements. The overall width of the Bridge is 22.9 metres wide.

Moreover, automatic weigh in motion (WIM) system will be installed on the approach roads to deter over weight traffic from crossing. “The Bridge is a landmark on the continent, and we are glad as a local company to have teamed up with Sika to construct the water proof deck,” says Bridget Kholer, director of Roko Technical Services a sub-contractor on the project.

The environment

Environmental protection was well-managed during the structure’s construction. To mitigate negative environmental impact, an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) was carried out to ensure that there was no pollution of the Nile water and a continuous monitoring and audit was done to ensure compliance against potential environmental and social risks with their corresponding mitigation plans defined.

Transport / Construction industry

There has been skills transfer to the Local Construction Engineers, technicians and craftsmen involved in the construction of the New Nile Bridge Project. The acquired skills will help in the transformation of Uganda’s Transport/Construction industry. The high local content in terms of materials, personnel and machines has meant that local people and businesses have directly and indirectly benefited financially from the project.

Materials used

The major materials used for construction were high performance and high strength reinforced concrete whose constituents are aggregates, high tensile steel, admixtures and cement 42.5N.  Special manufactured multi-strand high yield steel was used for the stay cable strands between pylons and prestressed concrete box girder. The road pavement layers were constructed with selected earth layers caped with a crushed stone base and asphalt finish.


The bridge structures (Abutments, Pylons & Box Girder) retain the gray concrete surface as the final finishing while cables take on the white colour of the HDPE Pipes; in the night the bridge lits in beautiful colours.


The construction scope of the New Nile Cable stayed Bridge include the construction of bored pile foundations, pile caps, abutments, two inverted Y pylons, and prestressed concrete box girder deck, installation of stay cables, approach roads and ancillary works.


Like any ground breaking work, the new Nile Bridge project was characterized with some challenges:

Delays in delivery of construction materials and equipment procured from overseas put a four month setback in the construction schedule. Moreover, the need to observe high environmental standards resulted in some non-compliant would-be local suppliers of materials, such as sand and gravel, being excluded.

The new bridge is set to be opened to the public in October 2018.

The New Nile cable stayed bridgeEnacted by government of Uganda in 2006 as its singular agent mandated to develop and maintain the national roads network and advice government on general roads policy, the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) has subsisted beyond expectations in the past 10 years of its existence, immensely addressing the issue of national transport and being responsible for the best road infrastructures in the country.

UNRA’s journey in ensuring that the country achieves a reputable roads network is still ongoing with several projects in the pipeline.These include: Kampala Fly over, Karuma Bridge, Kampala Jinja Express way, Kampala Southern Bypass, and Kapchorwa Swamp.

Project Team on the new Nile Cable Bridge.


Client Uganda National  Roads Authority(UNRA)
Contractor Zenitaka Corporation of Japan in Joint Venture with Hyundai Engineering and Construction of South Korea
Sub-contractors -Roko Technical Services

– Sato Kigyo for Bridge Substructure Works

– Utracon Overseas Pte. Ltd for Bridge Supestructure Works.

– Chongqing International Construction Corporation for Road works.

– Excel Construction Limited for Road Side Stations (Michino-Eki)

– Power Africa for Electrical Installations

– Roofings Group


Consultants Joint Venture of Oriental Consultants Co., Ltd/EightJapan Engineering Inc./PyunHwa Engineering Consultants Ltd.



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