Second Penang bridge link ready in July

The second Penang bridge is set for completion in July.

The longest bridge in South-East Asia and 20th in the world will then go through road commissioning and testing in August before being officially opened in September.

During a tour, the media was given a first-hand look at the 24km-long bridge with 16.9km spanning over water.

The second Penang bridge links Batu Kawan on the mainland to Batu Maung on the island and offers users a unique experience of its “curvy” design and aesthetics of the cable-suspended section of the bridge at the navigation span.

Travelling time on the bridge is estimated to take about 30 minutes at 80kph.

The bridge would also be decorated with LED lights to match various festive seasons similar to that of the Incheon Bridge in South Korea, said Jambatan Kedua Sdn Bhd Package One senior manager Azmi Mohamed yesterday.

He added that work had also started on road furnishing like the installation of parapet, street lighting, road signs and tarring.

He said the China Harbour Engineering Co Ltd (M) Sdn Bhd (CHEC) would be in charge of the 475m stretch of the main navigation span.

“The height clearance is 30m and width 240m for vessels to pass beneath at the main centre span.

“This bridge is also constructed with two car lanes and one motorcycle lane. This means that motorcyclists have to use the designated lane or risk being summoned,” he said.

He added that the opening of the RM4.41bil bridge in September would be two months ahead of schedule.

The second Penang Bridge is 10.5km longer than the first bridge and once open will provide easy access for commuters to the Batu Kawan stadium, Batu Kawan industrial park and the Plus highway.

On the island, commuters will have direct access to the Free Industrial Zone.

It was reported that the bridge is expected to reduce traffic congestion on the current Penang Bridge by 25% to 30% and could cater to around 100,000 vehicles per hour. - By WINNIE YEOH (The Star)

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