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Meet the man behind the world's longest sea bridge in China

Infra News - Published on Tue, 03 Jul 2018

Image Source: CGTN
CGTN reported that the Lingdingyang Channel is a trumpet-shaped estuary on the Pearl River, which stretches from Guangdong Province's Humen town in the north to Hong Kong and Macao in the south. The area with a 60 km radius has 14 cities and seven airports. It is one of the most important international waterways in China. To further connect the major cities around the Lingdingyang Channel and develop commercial activities between Hong Kong, Macao and the mainland, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge was developed, with construction beginning in December 2009. It's a huge project that is expected to cost more than 120 billion yuan. The whole bridge measures about 50 km, including an undersea tunnel of 6.7 km and four artificial islands. The Y-shaped bridge connects Zhuhai with Hong Kong and Macao.

Meng Fanchao joined the engineering team in 2004 and is the chief designer of the main section of the bridge. Meng took part in the College Entrance Examination in 1978, becoming one of the first college students during China's reform and opening-up period. His parents were both teachers and were strict with their children: "My parents always told us to behave well at the dinner table, to have good manner, and to live with honesty and integrity. Those are still fresh in my memory."

After graduating from the Department of Bridge and Tunnel Engineering of Chongqing Jiaotong University, he took part in many projects including the Shayang Hanjiang River Bridge, Bridge No. 5 of Mosul in Iraq, and the Huangshi Yangzte River Bridge, witnessing the progress and innovations in China's bridge construction technologies along the way.

The construction of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge is extremely complicated. It involves the co-coordinating three separate areas, as well as factoring in resistance to floods, strong winds and other environmental dangers.

Aside from using rational designs and state-of-the-art technologies, Meng wanted to infuse the bridge with unique aesthetics and cultural elements. This is demonstrated in the decoration of the towers: "We adopted Chinese knots to symbolize the solidarity of the three areas, that we are taking joint efforts to build the bridge and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area together."

The construction of the main bridge section was completed in February 2018. "Six years of planning and design, eight years of construction. 14 years is way too long for a bridge engineer." said Meng. In his prime when the project began, he is now approaching retirement and has graying hair. A middle school boy when it started, his son is now in his 30s. "You can say that me and my family made progress alongside the project."

Source :

Posted By : Nanda Koijam on Tue, 03 Jul 2018
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