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The Southern Bridge (Latvian: Dienvidu tilts) crosses the Daugava river in Riga, the capital of Latvia. The bridge was constructed between 2004 and 2008, and was opened on November 17, 2008.[2] Construction of the access roads lasted until 2013.

Southern Bridge

Dienvidu tilts
Dienvidu tilts 1.jpg
Coordinates 56°54′56″N 24°09′26″E / 56.9156°N 24.1572°E / 56.9156; 24.1572Coordinates: 56°54′56″N 24°09′26″E / 56.9156°N 24.1572°E / 56.9156; 24.1572
LocaleRiga, Latvia
Materialsteel, concrete
Total length803 metres (2,635 ft)[1]
Width34.28 metres (112.5 ft)[1]
Height13 metres (43 ft)
Longest span110 metres (360 ft)
No. of spans7
Clearance above8.5 metres (28 ft)
Construction start2004
Construction cost811.24 M € (and counting)

Because of the bridge's huge cost it also become colloquially known as The Golden Bridge (Zelta tilts).[2]

Construction costsEdit

The government control commission in a report for January 2002 to September 2008 showed that, during that period, costs increased fivefold – from a planned 108.84 million lats (154.87 million ) to 570.14 million lats (811.24 million €).[3] In 2011 Riga City Council terminated the agreement with Southern Bridge third round builders due to lack of funds.[4] In early 2012 Riga City Council signed agreement with the new constructors to carry out final works of third stage of the Southern bridge and borrowed an additional seven million euros for funding.[5]

In 2009 The Economy Police launched a criminal case on suspected violations in construction of the bridge.[6] State Audit Office concluded that the Riga City Council had squandered 27 million lats in the construction.[7] In 2013 the students of Stockholm School of Economics in Riga calculated that the same bridge could've been built for a budget two times smaller.[8]


  1. ^ a b Hanley, Monika (November 27, 2009). "A bridge to disaster". The Baltic Times. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Riga getting two 'new' bridges". Public Broadcasting of Latvia. August 20, 2014. Retrieved November 3, 2015. it may take a while before everyone refers to the Southern Bridge by its real name. It has entered the popular lexicon as the 'Golden Bridge', not because of the orange-ish coloration of its suspension system but because of the gargantuan cost of erecting it.
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Riga City Council terminates agreement with Southern Bridge third round builders". Baltic News Network. September 21, 2011. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  5. ^ "Riga to borrow seven millions to finish third stage of Southern bridge". Baltic News Network. January 24, 2012. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  6. ^ Petrova, Alla (April 27, 2009). "Criminal case on breaches in Southern Bridge construction process in Riga launched". The Baltic Course. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  7. ^ Petrova, Alla (March 18, 2009). "State Audit: LVL 27 mln were squandered in construction of Southern Bridge in Riga". The Baltic Course. Retrieved November 3, 2015.
  8. ^ "Southern bridge could have cost twice cheaper". Baltic News Network. January 18, 2011. Retrieved November 3, 2015.

Coordinates: 56°54′58″N 24°9′28″E / 56.91611°N 24.15778°E / 56.91611; 24.15778