Saigon 2 Bridge, the key bridge at the city’s northeastern entrance to the Southeast, the Central and the North, was opened to traffic on Tuesday after 18 months of construction.
The bridge is nearly one-kilometer long, 23.5 meters wide with six lanes, allowing heavy vehicles to travel on it. It runs parallel with the existing Saigon Bridge.
The project was predicted to be put into operation next month. However, the city government later asked the investor to finish it on October 15 to reduce traffic pressure on the Saigon Bridge.
Work started on the Saigon 2 Bridge in April, 2012 under the build-transfer format with total investment of nearly VND1.5 trillion.
According to the HCMC Department of Transport, around 40,000 vehicles travel on the Saigon Bridge daily. Therefore, the new bridge will help reduce traffic pressure of the old bridge by 50%.
The northeastern entrance is also the main gateway for goods transport to seaports on the Saigon River and the Soai Rap River in the future. Having put key projects such as the Hanoi Highway, Thu Thiem Tunnel, the inter-provincial road 25B and Binh Trieu intersection into use, traffic congestion in the area has dropped sharply.
However, to improve travel in the area, the city government must solve congestion at crossroads to ports along the Hanoi Highway, Binh Thai crossroad and the section of the highway in Binh Duong Province. Roads around the Binh Trieu Bridge also need to be expanded.
By Le Anh - The Saigon Times Daily