Work on a fifth tunnel under the Huangpu river in Shanghai started in early June as part the Chinese city’s 10th five-year plan, which adds a bridge and three tunnels across the river.

Three contractors are involved in the latest tunnel – Shanghai Tunnel Engineering, in cooperation with Taiwan-based Kingdom International Investment Development and Shanghai Construction Engineering & Management.

The Yuan 1.66bn (US$200M) 2.55km long link will connect Dalian Road in Puxi to the west, to Dongfang Road in Pudong.

The tunnel has been designed as a twin-bore configuration and when open will form a dual four-lane highway. Completion is scheduled within three years.

Shanghai’s 10th five-year plan is expected to cost a total of Yuan 6bn ($720M) by completion in 2005.

The three contractors will create a joint venture company with a 25-year operating concession.