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Bratislava's fifth Danube bridge to cost up to Sk4.3 billion on inflation

THE COST of building the new Košická St. Bridge in the capital city will increase by Sk679 million (€16.9 million) to reach a total of Sk4.279 billion (€107 million), chief of the investing company Metro told the news wire TASR.

Citing an updated bridge-budgeting study, Ladislav Csáder said the new pricetag is a result of the higher VAT rate (Sk278m) and inflation on building materials (Sk401m).

The project, originally budgeted at Sk3.6 billion, is funded 50 percent by a loan from the European Investment Bank and 50 percent by the state.

The Košická St. Bridge project, which commenced construction from both shores of the Danube in February 2003, is being built by the Czech Republic's Hutní Montáže Ostrava along with the local Slovak firm Dopravoprojekt.

On the downtown side of the Danube, the main arch structure has already been assembled. "The original plan of assembling and turning the main bridge span into position was completed in July 2004 and is now being reviewed," said Dopravoprojekt.

The mounting of the bridge arch onto two pillars, one on each shore of the Danube, is being planned for September 9-14. The success of the extremely difficult operation of turning the structure into place will also depend on weather conditions.

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