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The twin shores of Maputo Bay in the country’s capital will be linked by road by next December, if the completion of the bridge roadway connecting Maputo with KaTembe municipal district goes as planned.
The works involving the placement of the roadway board begins in July, according to Silva Magaia, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Maputo-Sul, which is overseeing the project.
Currently, a working platform is being installed which will allow the builders to work between the two towers in preparation for the hanging of the cables which will support the 680-metre span. According to Magaia, the assembly of the work platform should be completed in May, after which the two half-metre diameter steel cables which will support the roadway will be raised.
The roadway surface is of metal and was made in China. The ship carrying the 57 sections will dock in Maputo in late May or early June, after which assembly can start. Each piece is 12 metres wide and 26 long, to match the four-lane width of the bridge. The units, which will be welded together, are three meters thick and weigh about 125 tonnes each, according to Silva Magaia.
A crane will raise the parts from the ship to the proper height, necessitating navigation restrictions in the area during the months of assembly. A coordinating body involving all maritime entities affected, such as Maputo Port, vessels linking the two banks and fishermen, was set up in March to ensure the safety of an operation described as “extremely delicate”.
Magaia said that the movement of ships would not be significantly affected. It may be necessary in certain cases for a vessel to postpone its entry into the port area or departure while delicate bridge construction manoeuvres are completed, or otherwise bridge work will be temporarily suspended in deference to port activities.
Speaking in an interview with “Notícias”, Magaia said the project is aiming at opening the bridge is in December, although some finishing work may remain to be done.
One of the threats to this timetable already identified is the delay in the replacement of medium and high voltage power lines that pass through the Malanga area and feed the city of Maputo. EDM had guaranteed that the work would be completed by March, but this deadline was not met.Source: Notícias
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