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Incredible £135m bridge spanning an epic 8 miles linking massive city to island


An incredible bridge in Malaysia which cost a whopping £135m links a tiny island to one of the region’s major cities.

Many spectacular bridges have been constructed throughout the twentieth century, pushing the boundaries of civil engineering ever further.

From San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge to the world’s largest steel arch bridge in Sydney, the sky appeared the limit.

And more wonders have sprung up around the world, including Chinas’s breathtaking Beipanjiang Bridge that opened to traffic in 2016.

The suspension bridge towers 565 metres above the Beipanjiang Grand Valley and is so tall it can fit New York’s Empire State Building underneath it with more than 100 metres to spare.

Yet perhaps not so well known is a cable-stayed bridge built in south east Asia and which is one of the longest on the Asian continent.

Construction started in 1982 and was completed in just three years and nine months, costing RM800 million Malaysian ringgits, which at today’s exchange rate comes to £135 million.

The Penang Bridge is 13.5km (8 miles) long and connects the mainland of Peninsular Malaysia and Penang Island.

The bridge has a 6.2km (4 mile) dual carriageway and three 2.2km (1.4 mile) lanes at the main span.

The construction of the bridge was initially the idea of Tun Abdul Razak, the 2nd Prime Minister of Malaysia in the 1960s.

Plans for building the Bridge were drawn up under the 3rd Prime Minister, Tun Hussein Onn in the 1970s.

However, it was only during the term of the 4th Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, that the construction of the bridge started in 1982.

The Penang Bridge has become an iconic part of George Town, the colourful and multicultural capital of the island.

Once an important Straits of Malacca trading hub, the city is known for its British colonial buildings, Chinese shophouses and mosques.

Beyond the old town, George Town is a modern city with skyscrapers and shopping malls.

Just like Brooklyn or Golden Gate Bridge, Penang has contributed significantly to the rapid development of the island both as a tourist and industrial centre.



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