The Cambodian-Japanese Friendship Bridge will be temporarily opened to ease traffic flow during Khmer New Year next month, a Public Works and Transport Ministry official said on Tuesday.
Chhim Phalla, the ministry’s department of roads director, said the bridge will be inaugurated on April 3 after rehabilitation work is completed ahead of schedule. He said that Prime Minister Hun Sen will preside over the inauguration.
Mr Phalla was interviewed by reporters who were taken to the bridge rehabilitation project site in Phnom Penh during a press tour programme organised by Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Japanese embassy on Tuesday.
“The Cambodian-Japanese Friendship Bridge has been rehabilitated with high-quality Japanese technology,” Mr Phalla said. “We designed this bridge to last for another 50 years and will repair it again if we find any issues.”
Rehabilitation work done included the construction of new entry points and repairs to center portion which crosses the river, and shoring up of the entry and exit embankments.
The Cambodian-Japanese Friendship Bridge, spanning 709 meters across the Tonle Sap River, was constructed in 1963 through technical assistance from Japan but it was almost destroyed by the civil war in the 1970s.
Full story in Thursday’s paper