The ribbon of asphalt seems to stretch beyond the horizon. Yet in real life, it “only” covers a distance of just over 50 kilometers across the Pearl River Delta in southern China. However, even that is long enough to earn this ongoing construction project, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, the title of the world’s longest cross-sea bridge. Apart from bridge sections, the project also features a six-kilometer tunnel that travels underwater from an artificial island and resurfaces on another man-made islet. Once completed, the megastructure will link the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region on the eastern shore of the Pearl River Delta to the metropolises Zhuhai and Macau on its western shore.
The new link will considerably ease logistics operations in this emerging economic region and will thus also benefit DB Schenker’s customers. Forced to cross the Pearl River further north, trucks currently require four hours for the drive from Hong Kong to Zhuhai. The new bridge will shorten the trip to less than an hour. Thanks to the six-kilometer tunnel and three cable-stayed spans that have been integrated in the structure, shipping in the Pearl River Delta will not be affected.
Construction on the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, which features three lanes running in each direction, formally began at the end of 2009. The official opening, which was scheduled to take place at the end of this year, has now been postponed to 2017 at the earliest due to building delays.