Chinese technicians begin feasibility study of landmark bridge in the Maldives: media

Updated: 2015-05-22 17:51


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COLOMBO - Chinese technicians in the Maldives have begun drilling boreholes to assess the feasibility of a landmark bridge to connect the airport island to the capital city of Male, local media reported on Friday.

Technicians will drill 29 boreholes that are six inches wide and 50 meters deep on the ocean floor. The results of the process will determine how the foundation for the bridge is constructed. Four of the holes will be drilled on land, said Minister of Housing and Infrastructure Mohamed Muizzu.

"This drilling is necessary in order to get the information to design the bridge," Muizzu said. "We are currently in the designing phase."

"The bridge will be completed; we are sure that by the time it is, we will have a structure that even the opposition -- who have doubted this government's capabilities -- would applaud," he continued.

He further said that the Chinese side would forward the designs to the Maldivian government next month. The government would seek a developer once the designs are finalized by the Economic Council.

Both sides wish for practical work on the bridge's development to begin by end of this year, local media outlet Haveeru reported.

The President's Office had said earlier that construction work on the bridge would start in 2015, and that the project would be completed and opened in 2017.