At least five consortia are lining up to compete for a $5bn PPP contract to build a network of roads and suspension bridges over the Dardanelles Straits in Turkey, according to the Bloomberg news agency.
Quoting unnamed sources, Bloomberg said the competing teams included two Korean consortia, Hyundai Engineering & Construction, which will team up with Astaldi of Italy and Turkish contractors Ictas Insaat and Kalyon Insaat, and SK Engineering & Construction, which will be joined by Daelim Industrial, and Limak Insaat and Yapi Merkezi Insaat of Turkey.
Also in the running is the Itochu Corporation and the IHI Corporation of Japan, which will team up with Turkey’s Nurol Holding and Makyol Insaat.
Sichuan Road and Bridge of China is also planning to put in a tender with local partners, and another Chinese contractor, Road and Bridge International, will team up with Cengiz Insaat and Kolin Insaat.
The contract will be let by auction on 26 January, unless one of the teams is granted a postponement. Teams that wish to bid will have to put up $27m by way of entrance fee. Whichever contestant wins will undertake the work on a build, operate, transfer basis.
The projects covered by the programme of works include a 352km, six-lane toll-road strip passing over a 3.6km suspension bridge to be built near the town of Canakkale. Work on the bridge is scheduled to begin on 18 March.
The bridge, which was designed by Istanbul-based engineer Tekfen, will bear the name of "Canakkale 1915" in honour of the Ottoman Empire’s victory in the battle of Gallipoli. It has been claimed that it will have the longest single span in the world, a record currently held by the $4.6bn Akashi-Kaikyo bridge between Kobe and Awaji Island in Japan.
The road will run between Kinah in Thrace and Savastepe in Asiatic Turkey. It is due to be completed in 2023.
Image: The city of Canakkale, where the bridge will be built (Myamya/Creative Commons)