Govt opens bridge on Batang-Semarang toll road
The Jakarta Post
Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono inaugurated on Wednesday the Kali Kuto Bridge for temporary operations, completing the construction of the Batang-Semarang functional highway in Central Java.
The bridge was built above the Kuto River bordering Batang and Kendal regencies in Central Java.
The bridge will be closed after the Idul Fitri holiday as further construction will resume. The bridge will be fully operational on Oct. 5.
“We are only opening one lane for now, but we will open two if there is a queue,” Basuki said.
Central Java Police chief Insp. Gen. Condro Kirono said travelers could now drive directly from Batang to Semarang without exiting the highway until June 7.
However, Condro said from June 8 to 24, travelers could only use the bridge to travel from Semarang to Batang to ease congestion and reduce possibilities of accidents along the highway.
During the launch on Wednesday, minister Basuki drove a 12-wheeler truck across the bridge, followed by around 15 cars, in an effort to show that the government had ensured the safety of the construction following several bridge and highway collapses in several regions in the past two months.
Bambang Rianto, operation director II of state-owned construction company Waskita Karya, said the 100-meter section of the bridge directly above the river could withstand up to 16 tons, adding that the steel beams would be replaced with concrete after the holiday. (nor/gda)
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