A groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a 58km road and bridges crossing the Tonle Sap River connecting Kampong Chhnang to Kampong Thom provinces will be held in 2024, with several relevant ministries assuring that the project would have no serious impact on the environment.

While inspecting the construction of a multi-purpose port and logistics centre in Kampong Chhnang on March 9, Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol noted that the construction of the 58km road will begin at Kampong Leng district of Kampong Chhnang and run through Stung Sen district in Kampong Thom.

Part of the project will include building the longest bridge to date in Cambodia at 3,300m in length, passing over the Tonle Sap River and connecting the two provinces.

“After Prime Minister Hun Sen announced at the River Festival in Kampong Chhnang province in 2019 that they would build a 58km road and bridges linking Kampong Chhnang to Kampong Thom, we began planning the project and now we will start building this in 2024, without delay,” he said.

The construction project was studied by officials from the Ministry of Environment. The detailed study of Sevak Construction Co Ltd’s blueprints found no serious impacts to the environment, natural resources, water currents, fish migration or society as a whole.

Chanthol said the road will span the Tonle Sap River on around 150ha linking from Kampong Leng district in Kampong Chhnang to Stung Sen district in Kampong Thom. The project also has 100 pipelines and five smaller bridges.

Kampong Chhnang provincial governor Sun Sovanrith said he expected that the project will help ease the travel of people in the province to boost economic growth.

At present, the longest bridge in Cambodia is Neak Loeung, measuring 2,215 m at a cost of around $130 million.

The 58km road project, including the 3,300m bridge, is expected to cost over $250 million. Of that amount, $150 million goes to the road and around $100 million will be spent on the bridge, according to Chanthol.

The minister stated that he had recently wrote a letter requesting that Prime Minister Hun Sen obtain funding from China to begin the construction project in 2024 as planned.