Hai Van Tunnel 2 nears completion hinh anh 1The bridge and approaching road to the Hai Van Road Tunnel 2 are mostly completed (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNS/VNA) - The 6.2-km Hai Van Tunnel 2 – the longest road tunnel in Southeast Asia, connecting the central province of Thua Thien-Hue and Da Nang city, is very near completion after the final section was excavated.

Nguyen Tan Dong, Vice Chairman of Deo Ca Joint Stock Company – the unit constructing the tunnel – said the project marked an important milestone in the national transport sector because it was the longest road tunnel in Southeast Asia, with construction completed by Vietnamese workers.

“We are mobilising many teams to do three shifts all day and night to bring the project to completion as scheduled by the end of 2020,” Dong said.

Construction of the approaching road, linking Lang Co town in Thua Thien-Hue province to the tunnel, was 95 percent finished, he said.

For Hai Van Bridge, the contractor has already completed 23 of 26 girder bridges so far, the online newspaper Zing reported.

Dong said compared to the plan, the construction was more than two months ahead of schedule, so it was feasible that the tunnel would be put into operation by the end of 2020.

While the Hai Van Road Tunnel 2 was officially put into operation, it was expected to help in reducing traffic pressure for the current Hai Van Road Tunnel 1. It would shorten travelling time for vehicles and improve the efficiency of transporting goods and passengers, he said.

Pham Thanh Ha, deputy director of the Hai Van Road Tunnel project management unit, said the unit had drawn experiences from the construction of Ca Pass, so, the progress of construction of the tunnel was faster than scheduled.

The project of expanding Hai Van Road Tunnel was approved by the Ministry of Transport in 2016, including two stages with a total investment of more than 7.2 trillion VND (310 million USD). The first stage is to repair and upgrade the existing Hai Van Road Tunnel 1 and improve a section of National Highway No 1 running through the Hai Van Pass.

The second stage is to broaden a tunnel, which was used for the excavation, into a traffic tunnel – Hai Van Road Tunnel 2 – with four lanes and an approaching road to the tunnel of the same scale. The entire route is set to be put into operation by the end of 2020.

The Hai Van Road Tunnel 2, which is 6.2 km in length, built through a mountain, is designed with two sections for vehicles; each section is 9.7 metres in width. The north approaching road to the tunnel is about 1.7 km long and the southern approaching road is 4 km./.