BOLIKHAMSAI, 16 February 2016: The construction of the 5th Lao-Thai Mekong Friendship Bridge, which will connect Bolikhamsai province in Lao PDR to Thailand’s Bung Kan province, should begin in 2019.
Lao News Agency quoted Department of Public Works and Transport’s Road Management Division head, Vixay Phoumy, saying the survey and design of the bridge is now 90% complete and the location for its construction has been finalised.
The final design of 5th Lao-Thai Mekong Friendship Bridge Construction Project has already been submitted to the governments of Laos and Thailand.
“Currently, we are only waiting for the construction budget to be approved and the construction companies to make their final bids. Construction could begin in 2019 at an estimated cost of USD85 million,” the director said.
The two governments will share the cost of the bridge 50%-50%, he added.
The bridge will span the Mekong River approximately 1,350 metres long and 17 metres wide.
Once completed, the bridge will improve transport between two countries and should help to improve the local economies on both sides of the river. This bridge will link highway 13 in central Laos to northeast Thailand.
Currently, there are four Thai-Lao Friendship Bridges: Vientiane-Nong Khai; Savannakhet-Mukdahan; Khammouan-Nakhon Phanom; and Chaing Rai’s Chiang Khong-Bokeo’s Huay Xai.