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Published on Apr 23, 2009
Recorded from Costa Europa
The bridge was built with assistance from the Japanese government. The contractor was PentaOcean Construction.
The Japanese grant, accounting for 60% of the construction cost (or 13.5 billion yen), was agreed to during the visit of President Mubarak to Japan in March 1995, as part of a larger project to develop the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt bore the remaining 40% (9 billion yen). The bridge opened in October 2001.
The bridge, which has a 70-metre (230 ft) clearance over the canal and is 3.9 kilometres (2.4 mi) long, consists of a 400-metre (1,300 ft) cable stayed main span and two 1.8-kilometre (1.1 mi) long approach spans. The height of the two main pylons supporting the main span is 154 metres (510 ft) each. The towers were designed in the shape of Pharaonic obelisks.
The clearance under the bridge is 68 meters, which defines, therefore, the maximum height above the waterline (Suezmax) of ships that can pass through the Suez Canal.