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China forges ahead with building bridge to join Russian Far East

By The Siberian Times reporter
19 May 2015

Two-thirds of Chinese side already completed, but delay in Russia prompts call from Kremlin to speed up work on other side.

While the Chinese half is on target to be completed on time by November, work has yet to even take place on the Russian end. Picture: News.cn

Construction workers in China have completed two-thirds of their side of the first-ever bridge that will connect the country to Russia, officials have announced.

But while the Chinese half is on target to be completed on time by November, work has yet to even take place on the Russian end.

Crossing the Amur River, the link will connect the settlement of Nizhneleninskoye, in the Jewish Autonomous Region, and the city of Tongjiang - and ultimately lead to an extension of the famous Trans-Siberian Railway.

The bridge is being built through public-private partnerships with the private investment estimated at six billion roubles ($12milllion) divided equally between Russia and China. 

Amur bridge

Amur bridge

Amur bridge

Amur bridge

'More than 700 workers are racing against time in two shifts to meet the project's timetable.' Picture: icaijing.com

According to Lin Yonghan, a project manager at the China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group, 65 per cent of the main parts of the bridge in China has already been completed.

He said that 320 piles, with 17 spans, have been finished with Beijing having so far invested 1.6billion yuan ($258million) into the project.

Mr Yonghan said: 'Construction of the Tongjiang-Nizhneleninskoye railway bridge's main body will be finished before the end of this year. We will start building its auxiliary facilities next year.

'More than 700 workers are racing against time in two shifts to meet the project's timetable.'

The delay in starting the Russian side has prompted Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to order the Ministry of Transport to take urgent measures to begin work. Last week President Vladimir Putin, and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping also agreed to speed up the construction. 

Map of the project of the bridge across Amur

Visualization of the bridge across Amur

Plan of the bridge across Amur river

The 2,209 meter bridge will join the Jewish Autonomous Region (Russia) and the province of Heilongjiang (China). Pictures: Gipromost

Designed to have an annual cargo capacity of 21 million metric tonnes the bridge will create a new link between China's railway network and Russia's Trans-Siberian Railway, boosting trade, transportation and tourism. 

The bridge will be 2,215 metres long, with 1,900 metres in China and just 315 meters in Russia. It will allow a maximum train speed of 100 km/h, according to the project plan.

Construction of the Chinese section started in February last year, and the bridge is scheduled for completion in December 2016.

Comments (1)

According to the Wikipedia entry on the Amur River, this project began in 2007, and was due to be completed by 2010. If accurate, this would suggest there has been quite substantial delays.
Simon Robinson, Crewe uk
20/05/2015 00:31

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