THE Egyptian government has officially commissioned the world’s widest suspension bridge on the Nile dubbed the ‘Rod el Farag Axis Bridge’ designed to improve infrastructure in the country.
Rod el Farag Axis’ Bridge
Implemented by the Armed Forces Engineering Authority in co-operation with a number of national companies, the 16.7-kilometre Rod el Farag Axis’ Bridge is divided into five sub-bridges that connect a number of areas in northern and eastern Cairo to west Cairo. The longest of these bridges is Shobra Neighbourhood Bridge, followed by the Ring Road intersection Bridge, Warraq Bridge, Western Nile Bridge, and the Eastern Nile Bridge.
The bridge has six traffic lanes in each direction and measures 67.3 meters (222 feet) across, a feature that is recognised by the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s widest suspension bridge.
About one million cubic meters of concrete and 1,400 km (2,268 miles) of steel wire for 160 suspension cables were used in its construction by 4,000 engineers, technicians, and workers.
The bridge, which crosses the Nile on the North part of Central Cairo, acts as a key link to the highway stretching from the Red Sea in the East to Egypt’s north-western Mediterranean coast. It is meant to ease congestion in the capital and also provide access to alternative routes.
The basic cost of this project reached $9.94bn. However, if it was to be implemented now, it would cost about $23bn given the variation in the value of the Egyptian pound. Other projects that have been launched under the current administration include construction of a new capital in the desert east of Cairo, which is currently ongoing and the expansion of Suez Canal, which was completed in 2015.