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Details emerged on June 13 of the first bridge to be built over Turkey’s Canal Istanbul, a planned mega-project connecting the Sea of Marmara to the Black Sea, aiming to take pressure off the crowded Bosphorus Strait.

Foundations for the 1,618-meter (1 mile) bridge are expected to be laid in the last week of June with a ceremony attended by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, according to the Turkish Transport and Infrastructure Ministry.

The cable-stayed bridge will be built to provide a crossing around Sazlidere in the Edirne province as part of the Northern Marmara Highway (including the Third Bosporus Bridge) Project’s Başakşehir-Bahçeşehir-Nakkaş section (including connecting roads).

The bridge, whose main span is set to be 440 meters (481.2 yards) long, will have 136 stay cables, 272 anchorages, and four lanes of traffic in both directions.

The bridge’s 196-meter (643-foot) towers will be built with “diamond” geometry.

As part of the Canal Istanbul project, which was announced in 2011, a total of six new bridges will be built.

The project’s total cost is projected at $15 billion, with the six bridges carrying a price tag of $1.4 billion.

Some half a million people will be employed in the construction work.

The construction of the canal, with a daily passage capacity of 185 vessels, is expected to be completed in 2025-2026.

The planned 45-kilometer (28-mile) canal will be built west of the city center on the European side of the Istanbul province.


The Istanbul Canal (Turkish: Kanal Istanbul) is a project for the artificial sea-level waterway, which is planned by Turkey on East Thrace, connecting the Black Sea to the Sea of ​​Marmara, and

thus to the Aegean and Mediterranean seas. Istanbul Canal would bisect the current European side of Istanbul and thus form an island between Asia and Europe (the island would have a

shoreline with the Black Sea, Sea of ​​Marmara, the new canal and the Bosporus). The new waterway would bypass the current Bosporus.

The canal aims to minimise shipping traffic in the Bosporus. It is projected to have a capacity of 160 vessel transits a day – similar to the current volume of traffic through the Bosporus, where

traffic congestion leaves ships queuing for days off to transit the strait. Some analysts have speculated the main reason for the construction of the canal was to bypass the Montreux Convention,

which limits the number and tonnage of war ships from non-Black Sea powers that could enter the sea via the Bosporus, as well as prohibiting tolls made by traffic passing through it. In January

2018, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım announced that Istanbul Canal would not be subject to the Montreux Convention.

Istanbul Canal project includes also construction of ports (large container terminal in the Black Sea, close to the Istanbul Airport), logistic centers and artificial islands to be integrated with the

canal, as well as constructing new earthquake-resistant residential areas along the channel. The artificial islands will be built using soil dug for the canal. The Halkali-Kapikule high-speed train,

TCDD train projects as well as Yenikapi-Sefakoy-Beylikduzu and Mahmutbey-Esenyurt metro lines in Istanbul and the D-100 highway crossing, Tem highway, Sazlibosna highways are also to be

integrated with the canal project .

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