Kazungula Bridge is a road and rail bridge over the Zambezi River between the countries of Zambia and Botswana at the town of Kazungula. The 923-metre-long (3,028 ft) by 18.5-metre-wide (61 ft) bridge has a longest span of 129 metres (423 ft) and links the town of Kazungula in Zambia with Botswana. The bridge features a single-line railway track between two traffic lanes and walkways for pedestrians.
|Carries||2 lanes of A33 / M19 (1 each way), pedestrian traffic and railway line|
|Official name||Kazungula Bridge|
|Total length||923 m (3,028 ft)|
|Longest span||129 m (423 ft)|
|No. of spans||4|
|Piers in water||4|
|No. of lanes||2|
|No. of tracks||1|
|Track gauge||1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)|
|Construction start||5 December 2014|
|Construction end||December 2020|
|Inaugurated||10 May 2021|
Before the bridge was opened for traffic in May 2021, direct traffic between the two countries was possible only by ferry. The bridge takes advantage of the short 135-metre (440 ft) border the two countries share at the river, and is curved to avoid the nearby borders of Zimbabwe and Namibia.
In August 2007 the governments of Zambia and Botswana announced a deal to construct a bridge to replace the existing ferry.
Construction of the US$259.3 million project, which includes international border facilities in Zambia and Botswana officially began on 12 October 2014 and was completed on 10 May 2021 by the South Korean construction firm Daewoo E&C. Opening was delayed due to transport issues affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Construction was financed by the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the African Development Bank.
- "Botswana and Zambia open $260m Kazungula bridge". BusinessDay. 10 May 2021. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
- Mwale, Chimwemwe (6 September 2007). "Trade boom lies in wait for Kazungula Bridge". Zambia Daily Mail. Archived from the original on 1 December 2017. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
- "Botswana–Zambia Land Boundary". Sovereign Limits. Retrieved 7 December 2022.
- "2. Project description and Justification", Zambia Botswana Kazungula Bridge Project ESIA Summary July 2011 (PDF), African Development Bank Group, July 2011, p. 2, archived from the original (PDF) on 6 November 2015, retrieved 30 January 2018,
The bridge has been designed as an extra-dosed road-rail bridge configuration with middle deck sections of 129m, and 4 piers in the river, with a total length of 923m. It follows a curved alignment layout to avoid the border area in the Zambezi waters between Botswana and Zimbabwe, where the exact border positions have not been ratified.
- Ganetsang, Godfrey (4 September 2014). "Daewoo E&C wins $161m tender for Kazungula Bridge". Sunday Standard. Archived from the original on 24 July 2017. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
- "Zambia, Botswana reach Kazungula bridge deal". Palapye.com News Blog. AFP. 4 August 2007. Archived from the original on 3 October 2017. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
- "Kazungula Bridge to be completed". ZNBC. 28 October 2018. Retrieved 17 November 2018.
- "Unexplained delays in the multi-billion rand Kazungula Bridge". News 24. 22 December 2020. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
- "Kazungula Bridge project in Southern Africa to be commissioned soon". Construction Review. 28 March 2018. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
- Reuters (9 September 2018). "Botswana says China agreed to extend loan and cancel debt".
The bulk of the loan is expected to fund the Mosetse-Kazungula railway line project, which will link the central part of Botswana to the tourism hub in the northwest. The railway line will also promote regional trade as it will connect Botswana to Zambia via the Kazungula Bridge, currently under construction.
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- Zambia, Botswana to construct railway across Zambezi