Faro ploughs another €1.5 million into bridge project

Energy crisis, pandemic and Ukraine war to blame

Faro Council is channelling an additional €1.5 million into the project to build a new bridge to Faro Island (known in Portuguese as Ilha de Faro or Praia de Faro).

The supplementary funding was approved by Faro’s municipal assembly on July 28 and will bring the total investment up to over €6.6 million.

Says the council, the extra money aims to address the “exceptional situation of supply chains resulting from the global energy crisis, pandemic and war in Ukraine, which have been causing abrupt price increases to raw materials and labour.”

The local authority adds that these price hikes have add a “particularly relevant impact on construction and the costs of the works,” which it views as “crucially important to the municipality.”

The works, which are expected to last 540 days, are due to begin before the end of 2022.

For those who live, work or spend their holidays at Faro Island, construction of the new bridge cannot begin quick enough.

The project has been in the pipeline for years, but the path to finally getting to the point where construction is imminent has not been an easy one. It took four public tenders before a bidder was finally found, with constructors apparently uninterested in the works due to their price tag.

Faro Council increased the price tag after every failed tender, having finally attracted bids last year.

The current bridge to Faro Island –one of the town’s most popular tourist destinations – has only one lane, which often leads to bottlenecks especially in the peak of summer and leads to safety concerns for pedestrians and cyclists.

The new two-lane bridge will be built near the current bridge, which will be demolished once the new one is completed. It will also include two side pavements for pedestrians which will be “wide enough” for cyclists to use as well.

By Michael Bruxo

michael.bruxo@portugalresident.com