New Zambezi bridge





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  1. #1
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    Default New Zambezi bridge

    This was posted by Jan Putte on the Routes and Trails section. As he says, the end of an era. No more adventures on the sometimes working, sometimes not Caia ferry.

    Maputo Mozambican President Armando Guebuza on Saturday inaugurated the new bridge over the Zambezi river, bearing his name, which links Sofala and Zambezia provinces in the centre of the country.
    The "Armando Emilio Guebuza Bridge" is part of the main north-south highway and replaces an inefficient ferry service across the river. The only other road bridge over the Zambezi is hundreds of kilometers to the northwest, at Tete city.

    The bridge is 2,376 metres long. It has two lanes for vehicles, two hard shoulders to be used in the event of breakdowns, and two walkways for pedestrians. It is the second longest bridge in the country, beaten only by the bridge linking Mozambique Island to the mainland in the northern province of Nampula.
    Construction began in March 2006, and the building work was done by a consortium of two Portuguese companies, Mota Engil and Soares da Costa.
    The bridge cost about 80 million euros (113 million US dollars), provided by the European Commission (30 million euros), Italy (20 million), Sweden (18.3 million) and the Mozambican government (13 million). Japan provided nine million euros for complementary activities (including studies and resettlement).
    Ever since Mozambican independence in 1975, successive governments have dreamed of a bridge over the Zambezi at this spot. In 1979/80 work began on the access roads - but the war waged by the South African apartheid regime against Mozambique made it impossible to continue the work.
    After the end of the war of destabilization, the government set about seeking finance for the bridge. This was no easy task - repeatedly the government was told that there was not enough traffic to justify a new bridge, and that the ferry was perfectly adequate.
    This was certainly not the opinion of motorists who had to spend hours and sometimes days before crossing the river. Throughout the 1990s there was just one boat making the 15 minute crossing of the river, although this decade a second was added. Nonetheless, lengthy queues of trucks built up, and any perishable goods they carried were in danger of rotting.
    Now the ferry has passed into history. Guebuza was one of the last people to use it. He crossed the river by ferry from Chimuara on the northern bank, to Caia on the Sofala side, where the inauguration ceremony began. On both banks Guebuza took part in traditional ceremonies evoking the ancestral spirits of the region.
    Guebuza then cut the ribbon at the start of the bridge, and became the first citizen to drive over it - and to pay the toll fee. Guebuza drove the vehicle personally, with the First Lady, Maria da Luz Guebuza, seated beside him. He was followed by a huge crowd running or walking behind the car.
    The toll is the same as motorists had to pay for using the ferry - 800 meticais (about 30 US dollars) for trucks and 80 meticais for light vehicles. The bridge, managed by the National Road Administration (ANE), has a speed limit of 60 kilometres per hour.
    The two boats will now be moved from the Zambezi to other parts of the country where ferries are used to cross rivers.

    Copyright 2009 Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com).
    Tony Weaver

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    Previously Land Rover 1968 SII, 1969 SIIA, 1973 SIII, 1983 Toyota HiLux 2litre, 2006 Land Rover Freelander TD4 HSE.

  2. #2
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    Default

    Great news for the area and for those planning to travel on a tight schedule.

    One question in closing...according to the article they could not build this bridge in the seventies due to "the war waged on Moz by South Africa"... my question: were we ever "at war" with Moz?
    Gary
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  3. #3
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    Hi

    SA never went to war with moz as a country. it was the civil war between Remano and frelimo. SA only supported Remano i think.. We just bombed every thing from the air.

    Cheers

  4. #4
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    Default Bridge

    I will post some pics in a weeks time will be going to Nampula. I have been to the Island of Mozambique a few weeks back and crossed the longest bridge in Moz.
    Toyota Under Construction

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frik View Post
    I will post some pics in a weeks time will be going to Nampula. I have been to the Island of Mozambique a few weeks back and crossed the longest bridge in Moz.
    I'd be careful, Frik. The Mozambicans tend to be very sensitive about photographs being taken of any government buildings, bridges etc. Only take a pic if you are sure there are no cops or soldiers around.

    Tony
    Tony Weaver

    1991 Land Rover 110 Hi-Line S/W 3.5l V8 carburettor
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    2012 Mitsubishi Outlander.

    Previously Land Rover 1968 SII, 1969 SIIA, 1973 SIII, 1983 Toyota HiLux 2litre, 2006 Land Rover Freelander TD4 HSE.

  6. #6
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    Default Bridge at Caia

    some sneak preview photos of bridge (and one of ferry for posterity) - taken July 2009...
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  7. #7
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    Default new Zambezi Bridge at Caia

    I've just returned from a round-trip: Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi, back home to Zambia, and crossed the new bridge at Caia twice (MT100 each time). I tried to find out in Caia whether the (longest in the world, they say - 3.6km) railway-bridge-crossing from Vila de Sena to Mutarara was still passable by car (it's not - rails have been laid and it's supposed to be finished in Oct 09, but pedestrians, bikes and motorcycles can and do use it) in order to get to Vila Nova da Fronteira/Marka into Malawi.
    I had to go back to Sena (8km), up N to near Morrumbala via Sabe (52km), W past Pinda (17km), S past hotsprings (3.5km) i.e. all around Mt Morrumbala, to get to the Chire Ferry near Chipanga (MT100 per car) and on to Mutarara and N to the Malawi border.
    The last car at this border had crossed a week before; I had nice chats, but there were no hassles. They were keen on yellow-fever jabs though (later, on the Zambia border too), so if you've been in Tanzania it'd be good to have valid ones.
    I drove into Mozambique from Songea via the new border post (and new Umoyo 2 Bridge) at Mitomoni/Lupiliche. Tanzanian officials have nice new buildings, Moz's still operate out of shacks. Both sides' officials readily change Shs/MTs ($1=MT25, bank rate is 27 end-Aug 09) - no other money changers here.
    I'd tried to cross into Moz using the Umoyo 1 Bridge, but that won't be ready till Nov 09 ... or so they said. Umoyo 2 Bridge remains the only car-crossing point from Tanz to Moz, though rumour has it that there are sandbag crossing points S of Masasi/N of Mueda.
    Attached some pics of bridges: Umoyo 1, Umoyo 2, longest railway bridge at Mutarara, Zambezi bridge at Caia.
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  8. #8
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    Stunning stunning stunning, one day when I am big I will also be there!
    "Ability is what gives you the opportunity belief is what gets you there"

    David Maritz
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