Phnom Penh looks to add new bridges and undergrounds roads

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Two announcements this week in Cambodia’s capital of Phnom Penh seek to improve the connectivity and infrastructure of the growing city. Underground roads are being considered to ease traffic while a bridge connecting Koh Pich to Koh Norea has been approved.

Bridge to link Koh Pich & Koh Norea

The Phnom Penh Post reported that the Cambodian government has approved the construction of a bridge to the river linking Koh Pich island (Diamond Island) to the Koh Norea peninsula in Chbar Ampov district’s Niroth commune in Phnom Penh.

The Overseas Cambodia Investment Corporation (OCIC) had received approval in principle from the government to develop the Koh Norea area and the bridge will be a cable-stayed bridge.

The OCIC is “proposing a policy of importing equipment and machinery worth $40,888,580″ with the state paying for it reported the PP Post.

One of the benefits aside from easing the traffic congestion, especially on the Monivong Bridge, is the expected surge in property prices in the connected areas.

Keller Williams (KW) Sen Sok regional operation principal and Sam Sn Realty Co Ltd president Sam Soknoeun said: “real estate along the Koh Norea peninsula’s coastline is currently worth more than $1,000 per sqm while properties further inland can cost between $100 and $500 per sqm.”

OCIC deputy director Touch Samnang has recently told local Cambodian media that OCIC plans to “transform Koh Norea into a luxurious commercial development stretching over approximately 100 hectares.”

Two previous plans the OCIC had investigated to connect Koh Pich & Koh Norea concluded a bridge was estimated to cost around $60 million or a $200 million subway under the Bassac river could connect the two.

Bridge to link Koh Pich & Koh Norea
Photo Credit: Supplied by OCIC – artist’s impression

Bridges in Phnom Penh

There are some key bridges in the city that interconnect the peninsulas and Phnom Penh to the surrounding provinces. However, a number of newly planned bridges have been mentioned and assessed over the years and don’t always come to fruition.

In late 2019, a committee was also looking at bridges to connect in two locations, at Prek Bra district and Chak Angre district.

The current main bridges in Phnom Penh are:

  • Chroy Changvar Bridge (Cambodia-Japan Friendship Bridge): Is a 709-meter bridge that crosses the Tonle Sap River in Phnom Penh.
  • Prek Kdam Bridge: The Prek Kdam Bridge is 981 meters and crosses the Tonle Sap River in the Kandal Province at Ponhea Lueu.
  • Prek Pnov Bridge: The Prek Pnov Bridge is 996 metres and crosses the Tonle Sap River in the Phnom Penh province at Prek Pnov.
  • Monivong Bridges: Connects the Bassac River near the end of National Highway 2 and National Highway 1 in the south of the city.
  • Koh Thom Bridge (Cambodia-China Friendship Bridge): The 407-meter bridge built over the Tonle Bassac River, links National Road 110 in the village of Prek Thmey, Chroy Takeo commune.

A new heavy vehicle terminal is also being planned to be built on the outskirts of Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh to reduce the traffic in the city.

The number of newly registered vehicles in the Kingdom in 2019 totalled 640,183:

  • 15,956 heavy vehicles
  • 92,958 cars
  • 531,269 motorcycles

Undergrounds roads in Phnom Penh

The Phnom Penh Municipal Hall is also studying the possibility of building 3 new underground roads in Phnom Penh. The aim is to reduce the increasing congestion in the capital.

The three potential sites to be studied are:

  1. Road to link PH ECO Mall to National Road 1 in Chbar Ampov district’s Nirouth commune.
  2. Road near the Institute of Foreign Languages (IFL) along Russian Federation Boulevard.
  3. Road news two Deer Park and the Ministry of National Defence.

Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng had also requested Borey Peng Huoth to build an underground road via its gated community, The Star Platinum, to National Road 1 said the Phnom Penh Post.

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