The first vehicles will cross the Pelješac bridge in a few months. The concept of “uniting Croatia” was proposed in 2009, and it will finally be realized this year. Both locals and tourists that will be coming to Dubrovnik are looking forward to the opening of this bridge since they won’t have to cross the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina to travel to the rest of Croatia.
The majority of travelers cross the Bosnia-Croatia border on their route from Split to Dubrovnik. Even though both of these cities are in Croatia, they haven’t been connected by land for a long time. Since the borders between the former republics of Yugoslavia were formed, they haven’t been altered. The border between these two countries remained unchanged when they became independent states.
As a result, individuals traveling from Dubrovnik to the rest of Croatia must now pass through two border checks.
The decades-long dream of connecting Croatia was an old promise of past Croatian governments
The issue of the Neum Corridor and its border crossing should no longer exist in a few months. The Pelješac Bridge project will be realized after many years of political promises, debates, and failed attempts. The strategic project will connect the mainland to the Pelješac Peninsula.
From there, there will be a road down the peninsula and then on to Dubrovnik. Croatia will be completely connected for the first time in its modern history. Despite the apparent concerns for everyone in 2020 and 2021, a Chinese company won the tender and built the bridge.
It is worth noting that they have completed the project in a very short amount of time. This meant working even at night and at dawn, given the high winds and storms that hit the area.
Once realized, this project should significantly cut traffic and waiting times
The Pelješac Bridge, designed by Slovenian engineer Marjan Pipenbaher, spans the sea channel between Komarna on the northern mainland and the Pelješac peninsula. It passes entirely through Croatian territory and allows travelers to avoid the border crossings with Bosnia and Herzegovina at Neum.
According to the present administration, the European Commission ordered a preliminary feasibility assessment in 2013 that concluded that the Pelješac Bridge was the best decision for connecting Croatia’s south with the rest of the country.
The bridge cost 418 million euros, in which the EU participated with 85 percent of the money and Croatia with 15 percent.
The bridge design includes a four-lane carriageway, with one traffic lane and one emergency lane on each side. Pedestrians and cyclists will not be able to cross it.
Prime Minister Plenković revealed that the Pelješac Bridge and access roads will be completed by July 2022
“The Pelješac Bridge is a fascinating strategic achievement of the Croatian people and the government that will serve generations to come,” Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic said at the event when the final segment of the 2.4 km (1.5 miles) long Pelješac Bridge was installed.
Dubrovnik Mayor Mato Franković reflected on the project’s significance for the city of Dubrovnik. ”After 303 years, the extreme south of Croatia will be connected to the mother country, and we, the inhabitants of this part of Croatia, will cease to be second-class citizens waiting in a column at the border crossing for transit from one part to another.”, he wrote in his Facebook post.
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