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August 8, 2022

PM Ciuca: Danube River suspension bridge to be opened to traffic in December this year

Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca said on Friday after a visit to the site of the Danube River suspension bridge linking Braila to Smardan (eastern Romania) that the building consortium and the contracting authority have offered guarantees that the bridge will be opened to traffic in December this year.

“We came today to Braila County for an on-site assessment of the stage of the works on the suspension bridge across the Danube. We discussed all the details and the completion date of the work. Although the project is behind schedule, as the handover was supposed to take place in December last year, we now have guarantees from both the builder and the contractor that all the steps will be taken and the working pace will be such that the bridge can be opened to traffic in December this year,” Nicolae Ciuca said, according to Agerpres.

The Prime Minister added that considering that this is the only suspension bridge in Romania, Romanian engineers should acquire the new technologies specific to this project, which are being put into practice by two foreign companies, an Italian and a Japanese one, so that such works can be developed in the future with domestic forces.

According to the contractor’s representative, engineer Viorel Esanu, the delay has to do with the gaps in the relocation of utilities in the area of the suspension bridge.

The association between Italy’s Webuild (formerly Astaldi) and Japan’s IHI Systems Co. Ltd. won in January 2018 the tender for the construction of the suspension bridge across the Danube, the largest infrastructure project in Romania in the last 30 years; the contract stipulates that works shall be completed in 2023 (a 23-kilometer road network included), with 18 months for the design and 36 months for execution.

Non-reimbursable funds amounting to approximately 363 million euros from the European Regional Development Fund have been allocated for this project.

The Danube suspension bridge will be 1,974 meters long, with a central span of 1,120 meters plus two side spans of 489 meters – the one on the Braila bank, and 364 meters – that on the Tulcea bank, respectively. At the time of completion, it will be the third bridge in Europe by midspan and total length.

Its total width will be of 31 meters and will include four lanes of 3.50 meters each, four merge lanes 0.5 meters wide each, two hard shoulders each 1.50 meters wide and a median area with a width of 3 meters. To these add two additional lanes on both sides for pedestrian traffic, bicycles and maintenance, with the sidewalks having each a width of 2.80 meters.

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