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|The tunnel going under Cua LUc Bay would be the largest in Vietnam (Source:vov.vn)|
On March 14, the Quang Ninh People’s Council approved the pre-feasibility study of the undersea tunnel project through Cua Luc Bay – which will be the largest undersea tunnel project once it comes into operation. The pre-feasibility report will be submitted to the prime minister for approval.
The construction of the tunnel is expected to last between 2019-2024 with the total investment capital of approximately VND10 trillion ($434.78 million), mobilised from Quang Ninh province’s budget.
According to the plan, the tunnel will have six lanes with a height of 4.75 metres and width of 32.6 metres. It will allow vehicles to travel at a maximum speed of 60 kilometres per hour and will be able to withstand Level 7 earthquakes.
The 1.3km twin-tube tunnel will connect Halong city’s western tourism area and the city’s eastern residential area. In addition, it will also help improve traffic along the Haiphong-Ha Long-Van Don-Mong Cai Expressway and strengthen connectivity with the newly-built Van Don Airport.
Besides, the project will ensure transport circulation on National Highway 18 through Halong city, Loong Toong intersection, and the Bai Chay Bridge, which are showing signs of overloading and are at times completely congested, causing small accidents.
Three consultancy units expressed interest in the projects, including Nippon Koei Co., Ltd. of Japan, FECON Joint Stock Company, and Transport Engineering Design Inc.
They suggested two methods, using a tunnel boring machine or immersed tunneling, both of which are popular options in many countries for their safety and effectiveness.
The project’s board of management appointed the contractor and consultancy agencies have conducted surveys on the project’s effect on nearby communities as well as talked with relevant agencies and organisations.