World Bulletin / News Desk
The tender for the construction of İstanbul's third bridge over the Bosporus, which will connect Sarıyer's Garipçe village on the European side with Beykoz's Poyrazköy neighborhood on the Asian side, will take place in February at the latest, a key official has said.
General Directorate of Highways (KGM) General Manager Mehmet Cahit Turhan said the third bridge over the Bosporus will ease İstanbul's traffic to a great extent. He noted that the State Planning Organization (DPT) last Monday gave approval for the tender to be held. “The environmental impact report [ÇED] for the third bridge project will be carried out by the company that wins the tender,” Turhan said.
Speaking to Cihan news agency, Turhan said no more obstacles stand in front of the tender. “The conditions of the tender contract have been met. We are ready to tender the project and aim to complete construction within five years. Moreover, many countries have shown interest in constructing the project,” Turhan said.
According to the KGM general manager, the project -- estimated to cost around $6 billion, including advertising costs -- will be tendered under the build-operate-transfer (BOT) model. Traffic in İstanbul is expected to ease to a great extent because transit traffic (vehicles that do not stop in İstanbul) and heavy vehicles such as trailer trucks will be directed to the third bridge and its connecting roads. KGM estimates about 20,000 heavy vehicles will use the third bridge every day.
Some parties and civil society organizations that oppose the construction of the third bridge argue it will pose a tremendous threat to the city's forests and natural resources. They express concern about the impact it would have on the city's forests and water resources. Turhan, however, stressed that environmental issues are a priority in any project they undertake. “We therefore included the ÇED as a requirement in this project,” he said. “The law requiring a ÇED has been in practice since 1993.”
Moreover, in a statement issued in April 2010, Transportation Minister Binali Yıldırım said the government had taken social concerns into consideration during the preparation of the project and that all necessary precautions will be taken to minimize the bridge's negative impact on the environment.
The third bridge is expected to connect a highway starting in Kınalı, Tekirdağ province, to the west with another highway starting from İstanbul's Paşaköy neighborhood on the Asian side. This route extends to Gebze in Kocaeli, where it joins the highway heading to İzmir. The project involves the construction of a 260-kilometer main road along with separate connections at various points along the route. The 1,275-meter-long suspension bridge is expected to cost some $6 billion and will connect the Northern Marmara Highway with the Trans-European Motorway.
Two bridges currently span the Bosporus. The first is the Bosporus (Boğaziçi) Bridge, also known as the First Bosporus Bridge. The 1,510-meter-long gravity-anchored suspension bridge is located between Ortaköy on the European side and Beylerbeyi on the Asian side and was built in 1973 by then-President Fahri Korutürk.
The second bridge over the Bosporus was completed in 1988, when Turgut Özal was prime minister, and named after 15th-century Ottoman Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror.
Turkey tender for 3rd Bosporus bridge to take place next month
Turhan said no more obstacles stand in front of the tender.