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Putin demands bridge to Crimea built by end of 2018

October 08, 2014, 16:44 UTC+3 NOVOSIBIRSK
President Vladimir Putin issued an instruction to the government agencies monitoring major national construction projects to build a bridge across the Kerch Strait before the end of 2018
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Vladimir Putin at the session of the State Council Mikhail

Vladimir Putin at the session of the State Council Mikhail

© Metzel/TASS

NOVOSIBIRSK, October 8. /TASS/. President Vladimir Putin issued an instruction to the government agencies monitoring major national construction projects to build a bridge across the Kerch Strait before the end of 2018.

The instruction was voiced on Wednesday at a session of the State Council, the country’s main consultative body, in Novosibirsk.

The Kerch Strait, a narrow enough body of water connecting the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov, separates the Crimean Peninsula from the rest of Russia. Building a bridge across its water area is vital for the maintenance of communications and transportation between the Republic of Crimea and the rest of Russia, as all the land-surface routes between them cross the territory of Ukraine.

Putin said at the State Council’s session much has been done in the sphere of road construction and maintenance over the past years.

“Some extremely complicated road facilities have been built for the Olympic Games in Sochi, the APEC summit in Vladivostok and the World University Games in Kazan,” he said.

A program for finalizing the so-called special-category bridges that cross the main inland waterways of Russia has been rounded up. “Construction of these bridges began back in the Soviet period,” Putin recalled.

He said road infrastructure and its ramification has been getting intense attention at the federal, regional and municipal levels in the past years and financing of the sector has been redoubled, thus opening the doors to an increase of the volumes of construction, reconstruction and preventive maintenance.

The bridge across the Kerch Strait is expected to have a length of 19 kilometers. The project has been entrusted to the federal automobile road agency Rosavtodor

Construction of the transport overpass includes a number of combined infrastructure elements like a railway section of the bridge, as well as ramification and upgrade of railway lines in the area of Kerch City on the Crimean shore and on the Taman Peninsula on the opposite shore.

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