DRIVERS looking to cross Suzhou Creek should encounter fewer traffic jams in future, after a new bridge opened yesterday, Shanghai road authorities said.
The Jiangning Road Bridge, which took a year to build, spans the creek from Guangfu Road W. in the north to Jiangning Road and Aomen Road. The old Jiangning Road Bridge, built in 1968, was demolished due to subsidence problems.
The new 588-meter bridge has three lanes, wider than before, said builders.
The bridge is expected to "ease pressure on areas where vehicles take detours to cross the creek," said traffic officials.
It features one lane in each direction and a third in the middle for turning. This third lane will open before the lunar New Year.
The bridge will increase traffic capacity across the creek by 50 percent, said the authorities.
Local taxi driver Wu Huiming said cabbies were pleased that the new bridge was open. "It will be really convenient for us and our passengers," said Wu.
Wu said he had to take detours via another bridge when taking passengers to a nearby hospital.
This meant higher fares and anxious moments for passengers if they were stuck in traffic, he said.
The bridge also features pedestrian access and greenery areas.
The project included demolishing the old bridge, building the new one, plus work on pipelines and bank renovations.