Hong Kong-Macau-Zhuhai bridge to open at the end of 2016: Bridge Authority
The construction of the cross-delta bridge is proceeding to schedule and is expected to be open to traffic by the end of 2016 as was originally planned. This, according to Bridge Authority Exectutive Director Wei Dongqing.
As of yet no decision has been made as to how much to charge at the tolls and how to process travelers rapidly at the border checkpoints, a working group has been created to address these issues said Wei addressing reporters at a media tour jointly conducted by the authority and the Macau Infrastructure Office (GDI).
The bridge connecting Hong Kong with Macau and Zhuhai is 55-kilometers and is made up of a 6.7 kilometer long undersea tunnel running between two man-made islands – known as “Artificial West Island” and “ Artificial East Island” with the “Artificial East Island” located close to Hong Kong’s border crossing facilities.
According to the Macau News Online,Wei was quoted as saying that
“construction of the two artificial islands was almost completed while the main construction – including the main bridge which is about 22 kilometer long and the two man made islands – was proceeding smoothly with progress on the main construction [segments] on schedule… although the main [segments] are the responsibility of the authority while the construction of the border facilities is the responsibility of the three governments respectively. However, all the projects must be completed at the same time,” Wei said, adding that the authority will complete tender regulations for the electrical installations of the bridge by the end of this year.
Wei said the authority would ensure that it will open as scheduled, when pressed to confirm a time frame when the bridge would actually be open to vehicular traffic.
“According to the original plan it will be open to traffic at the end of 2016…and there will be many difficulties we’ll have to overcome, We have confidence that we can overcome all difficulties as our construction team comprises experts from different places”.
To enter any of the three cities, travelers will need to pass through customs and immigration facilities which are part of the mega-project.
Senior GDI engineer Lam Wai Hou, stated that the design for the Macau checkpoint facilities would be finished at the end of 2014.
Lam added that the construction of a man-made island will house separate buildings to be used by the Macau and Zhuhai governments for their respective checkpoints, are due to be finished soon.
“But the buildings will be connected …the construction of the border facilities will start soon,” he said, adding that the Macau border facilities needed to be completed on schedule to ensure the bridge opens on time.
The Macau and Zhuhai border facilities will be able to handle 250,000 travelers per day while there will be 36 channels for vehicles, adding he believed the facilities should be able to cope with future needs, stated Lam.