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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - City Hall continues to mull Tonle Sap bridge

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If the bridge is built, the capital city will be in closer proxiimity with its eastern parts while alleviating the major problem of traffic jams. Moeun Nhean

City Hall continues to mull Tonle Sap bridge

While plans are underway for the construction of a bridge which will connect the old railway track area in Sangkat Kilometre 6 to Overseas Cambodia Investment Corporation’s (OCIC) Chroy Chongvar satellite city, details on a development timeline remain sketchy.

City Hall spokesperson Mean Chanyada told Post Property earlier this week that expert officials from the municipality were considering the construction of a new bridge which would connect the railway track area to OCIC’s satellite town.

He added that City Hall considered moving the new bridge to that location since it was a dead-end area.

He continued, “This bridge will be as long as the Chroy Chongvar bridge [which is approximately 700 metres].”

The funding of the new bridge will come from OCIC’s pockets. However, Chanyada would not disclose an estimated capital cost or outline when construction could begin.

While construction was initially expected to start this year, Chanyada said a change in location had resulted in the delay. It’s understood experts are still working on an environmental impact statement.

According to Chanyada, the new bridge is in line with City Hall’s master plan until 2035, which involves constructing a road connecting the railway track in Kilometre 6 to Street 270.

“The construction of this bridge will help facilitate traffic, [move] Phnom Penh closer to the eastern parts, and also increase our economy,” he said.

Touch Samnang, vice president of OCIC, declined to comment but said he had not participated in any recent discussions with City Hall regarding the construction of the bridge.

Samnang referred Post Property to Sam Piseth, Phnom Penh’s Public Works and Transport Department director, who could not be reached for comment before deadline.

Kim Heang, president of the Cambodian Valuers and Estate Agents Association, said the plan to construct the bridge had, in reality, been long established.

He believes the bridge, if built, could result in rising land prices for surrounding areas.

“This area is fit for housing and tourism since there is much available land with rivers on both sides,” he said.

Dr Van Vat, a planning specialist and urbanisation expert, said this project was similar to those that have been developed in Hanoi where the Vietnamese government built bridges across rivers to facilitate heavy traffic flows.

Vat said there was a pressing need for the bridge because it would aid in alleviating Phnom Penh’s tiresome traffic jams while also acting as a shortcut into the city centre.

He continued, “This bridge will expand more routes to help decrease traffic jams in the city. The more bridges there are, the more choices available for commuters.”

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