On Friday (March 18), Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan opened the 1915 Canakkale Bridge, which is the longest suspended bridge. This stunning bridge spans the Dardanelles strait in northwest Turkey. Erdogan has prioritized a series of major infrastructure projects in the last two decades of his presidency.
Travel time between Asia and Europe will be reduced to six minutes. Previously, vehicles traveling between Anatolia and the Gallipoli peninsula had to cross the Dardanelles in a one-hour ferry trip, which included waiting time. The journey will now take around six minutes. 1915 Canakkale Bridge connects the European and Asian shorelines of Turkey, alongside the three bridges built in Istanbul.
‘These works will continue to provide profit for the state for many years,’ said Erdogan at an opening ceremony marking a 1915 Ottoman victory against French and British forces in the Dardanelles during World War I. Erdogan, who often uses such infrastructure projects to drive economic growth, said, ‘These projects have a large share in putting our country ahead in investment, workforce, and exports’.
The gigantic structure was designed by Tekfen and T-ingénierie COWI A/S and the construction of the Dardanelles bridge project began in March 2017, with more than 5,000 workers involved. Its midspan measures 2,023 meters, a reference to the Turkish Republic’s 100th anniversary in 2023. The bridge’s two towers total 318 meters in height, making it the second tallest bridge in Turkey, after the Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge, and the third tallest structure in the country.