April 19. 2024. 9:45

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Third of asphalt missing from EU-financed Bulgarian highway, says minister

A third of the asphalt covering the highway ring road around the Bulgarian capital is simply gone, announced Regional Development Minister Ivan Shishkov, who, together with Vencislav Angelov, the head of the state agency Road Infrastructure, have now inspected the road twice.

At the first inspection, Shishkov said that a third of the asphalt laid in the project, which should be 20 centimetres, was not laid. “What you see right now is 14 centimetres, part of the road is missing,” Shishkov told the media.

Angelov, for his part, said that additional drilling would be done on the section to see what the current condition of the road base is. A sample of the asphalt coating was taken from a bridge, and then the strength of the steel structure was tested.

The highway is in need of major repairs, the minister said, adding that these will have to be carried out much earlier than planned and at the expense of the state. The construction of the 17 kilometres of the Northern expressway around Sofia cost €110 million.

Financing was provided under the Operational Programme “Regional Development” 2007-2013. On 30 December 2015, then Prime Minister Boyko Borissov solemnly opened the 13 kilometres from the road, and on 28 April 2016, the entire highway section was put into operation.

(Krassen Nikolov | EURACTIV.bg)