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An old colonial bridge in Kampot province, pictured in 2011, is due to receive repairs following an order by Prime Minister Hun Sen. Joe Mazzola
An old colonial bridge in Kampot province, pictured in 2011, is due to receive repairs following an order by Prime Minister Hun Sen. Joe Mazzola

Colonial-era Kampot bridge to get repairs

Responding to requests on his Facebook page on Tuesday, Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered that an old colonial bridge in Kampot province be repaired after lying in disuse for three years due to safety concerns.

Provincial engineers began an inspection of the bridge immediately after receiving the order, Suk Sarad, Kampot’s provincial administrative director, confirmed yesterday.

“Officials are now inspecting the bridge, but we don’t know when it could be repaired,” Sarad said, adding that it’s likely the bridge will only be suitable for bikes, motorbikes and pedestrians.

Officials from the Cambodian People’s Party said the decision to repair the bridge was prompted by citizens who would like to save time and gasoline while travelling. Kampot already has a new bridge available, but using it forces some local residents to make long and costly detours.

Denise Ruygrok, owner of Kampot’s Rikitikitavi guesthouse, said it’s a good idea to make the bridge safe for use, but that she hopes the design won’t be altered.

“I don’t think they should change the design; it’s quite a unique piece and really defines Kampot,” she said.

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