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Howard Stutz
 

Construction begins on Macau-Hong Kong bridge

11 December 2009

LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- A massive automobile bridge linking Macau and Hong Kong is expected to begin construction next week according to press reports from Asia.

The bridge, which would connect China's two largest Special Administrative Regions and the Zhuhai, will have three lanes in both directions and will feature a parking garage for 10,000 vehicles on the Macau side.

The Chinese government, along with the governments of Macau and Hong Kong, is jointly funding the bridge, which is expected to cost upward of $40 billion in Hong Kong dollars, which equates to about $5.164 billion in U.S. currency.

Completion for the project is expected in either 2015 or 2016.

Currently, high-speed ferries that travel across the South China Sea connect Hong Kong and Macau.

In October, about 54 percent of visitors came into Macau from Mainland China and 28 percent came from Hong Kong.

Susquehanna Financial gaming analyst Robert LaFleur said the bridge is needed in Macau because casino expansion may be resuming in he region.

"We view the news of the bridge announcement as a long-term positive for the Macau market," LaFleur told investors. "As Las Vegas Sands Corp. resumes construction on the Cotai Strip, more improvements in infrastructure will be needed when a critical mass of properties comes on line.