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Penang Second Bridge, Penang, Malaysia

Key Data

The Penang Second Bridge is a cable-stayed bridge being built across the South Channel of Penang, Malaysia. The 24km bridge will link Batu Maung on Penang Island with Batu Kawan on the mainland. It will be the longest bridge in Malaysia and South East Asia when it opens for traffic in November 2013.

Penang Second Bridge will be the second bridge structure linking the island to the mainland after the first Penang Bridge, which was constructed in 1985. The new bridge is expected to reduce traffic on the first Penang bridge by 20% and will transform Penang into key logistics and transportation hub.

Penang Second Bridge project

The Malaysian Government unveiled plans for the construction of the Second Penang Bridge in August 2006. Built under a cooperative programme between China and Malaysia, it is the largest civil work carried out in Malaysia in the past 20 years.

The project is implemented as part of the 9th Malaysia Plan. Following the groundbreaking ceremony on 12 November 2006, China Harbour Engineering Co (CHEC) and UEM Construction carried out soil studies and test piling works. The construction of commenced in November 2008 and is scheduled for completion in 2013.

Bridge design

"Penang Second Bridge is the largest civil work carried out in Malaysia in the past 20 years."

Similar to the first Penang bridge, Penang Second Bridge will have a cable-stayed, mid-span of 250m and a clearance height of 30m above sea level.

A dual-pylon, cable-stayed structure consisting of three spans was adopted for the main navigation spans. The high clearance will allow large ships to pass under the bridge.

The bridge will have a dual carriageway with two lanes and a motorcycle lane on either side. The approach spans will have a width of 29.8m and main navigation spans will be 35.6m wide.

The overall length of the bridge will be 24km, of which sections covering 17km will be built on the channel.

Penang Second Bridge will have a new Batu Kawan interchange to link the Northern Route on the North-South Express-way.

A new toll plaza will be constructed at the approach of interchange. A second new interchange in Batu Kawan will also be built for pedestrians to access the bridge from Batu Kawan. The proposed speed limit on the bridge is 80kmph.

Construction of Penang Second Bridge

The construction of the Penang Second Bridge was awarded in two packages. The first package includes construction of the main span, substructures and foundation. The second package involves works on the superstructure and approach spans.

"Anew Batu Kawan interchange will be built for pedestrians."

Around 24% of the bridge construction involving the substructures and foundations was completed in April 2010. CHEC is using pre-fabricated box beam technology for the beam construction. The innovative 'short-line matching' technology allows the production of short sections of beams measuring 3-4m for the bridge. Because the bridge location is surrounded by shallow waters, small beams will be easily transported to the site by smaller vessels.

The box-beam technology will also enable the bridge to withstand earthquakes measuring 7 on the Richter scale.

A temporary jetty in Batu Maung was constructed by CHEC to provide logistics support for construction materials, plant and machinery and construction workforce. Around 1,000 engineers and technical staff and workers are employed in the project.

Penang Second Bridge contractors

The Second Penang Bridge is being constructed by CHEC, a subsidiary of the China Construction & Communications Group (CCCG) in cooperation with UEM Construction.

UEM is a wholly owned subsidiary of Khazanah National, which is an investment arm of the federal government.

The Malaysian Government signed a contract with UEM Group for the construction and management of Penang Second Crossing Bridge in November 2006. Jambatan Kedua) supervises the construction, management and operations of the bridge.

Project finance

"Malaysia and China agreed a MYR2.7bn loan in July 2007."

The Second Penang Bridge is estimated to cost MYR4.3bn ($1.29bn). The project is largely funded by the People's Republic of China through the Export-Import Bank of China.

Malaysia and China signed a MYR2.7bn ($800m) loan agreement in July 2007 for the bridge construction.

The loan will be repaid over 20 years with an interest rate of 3% per annum. The remaining cost of the project is funded by the Malaysian Government.

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Like the Penang First Bridge, Penang Second Bridge will connect Penang Island to the Malaysian mainland.
Penang Second Bridge will be the longest bridge in South East Asia when it opens for traffic in November 2013.
Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Malaysian Prime Minister between 2003 and 2009, sanctioned the construction of Penang Second Bridge at a ceremony in November 2006.