It has taken five and a half years to complete the bridge across the Hau River at a total cost estimated in 2001 at 4.8 trillion dong. As part of National Highway 1A, the country's backbone, the bridge has a width of 23 m and a length of 2.75 km but there is around 13 km of access road built on both sides of the river.

Currently, transportation between Can Tho and Vinh Long depends on ferry services. According to the Hau Giang Ferry Authority, 50,000 people, 7,300 automobiles, and 27,000 other vehicles, mostly motorcycles, travel between the two provinces by ferry for around 15 minutes on normal days. On holidays, traffic rises 30 percent to 50 percent and it takes long hours or even a day to cross the river by ferry.

After the bridge is opened to traffic on Saturday afternoon, the ferries will stay in service until the Ministry of Transport makes a decision on their fate, said the My Thuan Project Management Unit, the Can Tho Bridge project owner. When ferry services stop, 99 of around 300 staff at the ferry terminal will be laid off and some others will be sent to other ferry terminals in the region, said Phan Quang Du, director of the Hau Giang Ferry Authority. The ferry terminal operator will be converted into a one-member limited liability company responsible for managing and operating the Can Tho Bridge.

The bridge allows for a maximum speed of 80 km per hour and has a vertical clearance of 39 m for ships of up to 10,000dwt to pass. This project was originally scheduled for completion by end-2008 but the collapse of two spans in September 2007 led to a suspension of construction work. So the last segment of the bridge had not been put in place until October 2009.

The project is expected-to give a much-needed boost to transportation between HCM City and the Mekong Delta provinces of Can Tho, An Giang, Kien Giang, Ca Mau, Soc Trang, Bac Lieu and Hau Giang.

The Saigon Times Daily - April 27, 2010