Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure has on Wednesday revealed that the Sinamale' bridge, more commonly known as the China-Maldives Friendship Bridge, will be opened for public use on the 7th of September, while it is to officially be opened on Thursday.
Housing Minister Dr. Mohamed Muizzu revealed that the bridge, that connects capital city Malé to Hulhule' island where Velana International Airport is located, will comprise of two lanes, out of which one is for public transport and the other will be specific for heavier, bulkier vehicles.
Muizzu further revealed that which the commencement of public transport, MPL bus services will also commence. As such, the buses for the transport have been brought to the capital city and are ready for transport. Minister Muizzu revealed that they have not yet decided on a fee for the transport, assuring the public that it will be affordable.
“The bus terminal has been constructed. Preparations are almost at an end and buses are ready for transport” said the minister.
While over a 1,000 expatriate workers are involved in the bridge development project established between the government and Chinese company, China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) Second Harbor Engineering Company Limited, about USD 200 million are being spent for the project, out of which USD 116 million is free aid by the Chinese government and USD 72 million is allocated as loan by the Chinese government.
Minister Muizzu further revealed that the inauguration of the Sinamale' bridge will commence on Thursday and the ministry has scheduled several events to mark the occasion which will go on for a duration of six days after being opened.
The bridge is to be opened at 08:00 p.m. on Thursday night in the Artificial beach and carnival areas and will be commemorated by a special delegate from Chinese President Xi Jinping. Locals may partake in the ceremony as well. The ceremony is being held as part of their Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) and is to feature fireworks which are to be organized by the Maldives Police Service.