ZHUHAI, June 29, 2016 (Xinhua) -- The aerial photo taken on June 29, 2016 shows the construction site of the main bridge parts of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, the world's longest cross-sea bridge, in Zhuhai, south China's Guangdong Province. Two main bridge sections of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge joined together on Wednesday. (Xinhua/Liang Xu)
GUANGZHOU, June 29 (Xinhua) -- Work to connect the main part of a bridge linking Zhuhai in Guangdong Province with Hong Kong and Macao was completed on Thursday.
Steel girders closed the last cap in the final arch and the structure is now ready to be paved. The bridge and tunnel system spanning the Pearl River estuary is an important waymark in the integration of Hong Kong, Macao and Guangdong.
More than 400,000 tonnes of steel have been consumed in main route -- a 6.7-km undersea tunnel and a 22.9-km bridge -- enough to build 60 Eiffel Towers, according to construction chief Wei Dongqing.
Work began in December of 2009 at Zhuhai. The Y-shaped bridge will eventually be 55 km long, starting from Lantau Island in Hong Kong with branches to Zhuhai and Macao.
Once in operation, the four-hour drive from Hong Kong to Zhuhai will be reduced to less than an hour. All Pearl River Delta cities will then be within a reasonable commuting radius of Hong Kong.