Construction of the main bridge of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge is progressing well with the bridge and subsea tunnel sections now connected.
The Transport & Housing Bureau gave the update today in response to media enquiries, saying furnishing works for the tunnel interior, roads and buildings on artificial islands, as well as road and traffic control works are in progress.
It said the main bridge, which is situated in Mainland waters, has seen an escalation in its construction cost due to the increase in labour and material costs as well as the refinement of the design and construction schemes.
The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge Authority has reviewed applications submitted by contractors and prepared a report on the adjustment of the project estimate. Mainland Authorities have submitted the adjustment report to the State Council.
The cost overrun of the main bridge is believed to be about RMB10 billion.
The additional capital cost arising from the cost overrun is expected to be apportioned by the Mainland, Hong Kong and Macau, with the remaining sum to be financed by bank loans, the bureau said, which is in compliance with the principle stipulated when the project was approved.
The Government will report the detailed arrangement, including the amount to be financed by the Hong Kong side, to the Legislative Council after the cost overrun is confirmed to seek its approval for the required funding.
The bureau said the project’s Joint Works Committee discussed in detail the bridge’s commissioning date at a meeting on November 7.
Hong Kong, Macau and the Mainland have agreed to try to achieve the target of completing the major construction works of the main bridge and the ports by the end of this year.
The bridge’s commissioning date will be ascertained by the Central Task Force and will be announced once confirmed, the bureau added.