The last, 165th, segment of the Pelješac Bridge was installed at exactly midnight last night and the bridge was physically completed. The far south of Croatia is now connected to the rest of the country with this bridge.
Fireworks lit the night sky over the bridge as the largest infrastructure project in Croatia was completed.
China Road and Bridge Corporation not only completed the new Peljesac Bridge on deadline, they actually finished it before the deadline. Almost 70,000 tons of steel and 70,000 cubic metres of concrete were installed in the 2.5-kilometer-long bridge.
“I have the indescribable pleasure to say that Croatia is united. This project has been the dream of many for the past almost 30 years. Probably many have dreamed of it before and tonight we have achieved a goal that solves a 300-year-old problem,” commented Croatian Prime Minister, Andrej Plenkovic, at the opening ceremony.
The first vehicles over the bridge should pass in the spring of next year and the complete project of the bridge with access roads will be completed by June 2022. The director of Croatian Roads, Josip Škorić, explained that the complete project of the bridge and access roads should have been completed in 36 months, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the works on the access roads were delayed behind the bridge.
“I am particularly pleased that this is the largest project we have had funded in our first seven years of membership in the European Union, that is, co-financed it with a €357 million grant,” said Plenkovic. And added “I would like to thank China Road and Bridge Corporation, the consortium that had the best bid in the tender, all Chinese engineers, workers, experts who have been here in recent years, and what I must emphasize, completed the bridge three months ahead of schedule despite the pandemic, despite transfer problems, transporting different segments of this structure from China to Croatia.” added the Prime Minister.
And the Prime Minister concluded that “I would like to thank other companies that are engaged in this project, this is a big project and we believe that we will all be able to officially open it together with great pleasure in the spring of next year. For Dubrovnik it means better transport connections, for tourism of Peljesac, Korcula and the whole south of the county it means a new quality that is irreplaceable, practically the whole south of Dubrovnik-Neretva County in terms of tourism is now becoming a self-destination, much more than before.”