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Last Updated: Monday, 17 October 2005, 19:30 GMT 20:30 UK
100m bridge 'to bring investors'
The Swale Crossing
The crossing finally spanned the river a few weeks ago
A new 100m bridge linking the Isle of Sheppey with mainland Kent will attract investors to the area, the roads minister has said.

Dr Stephen Ladyman said investors would see Sheppey "in a new light".

Prior to the new crossing across the River Swale, the old bridge had to be raised for large ships to pass, which led to traffic chaos.

"The old bridge opened 20 times a day - that's 20 traffic jams a day - bound to put investors off," the Thanet MP said.

He added: "With the new bridge open that won't happen any more.

Four lanes of traffic

"People will look at Sheppey in a new light when they are thinking about investment decisions."

The new 35m (115ft) high bridge, built with 59,000 tons of concrete and 10,000 tons of steel, will have four lanes of traffic and carry an estimated 26,000 vehicles a day.

Graham Link, project manager, said the last piece of the bridge was dropped in at the end of September.

The Isle of Sheppey, which measures approximately nine miles by four miles, lies off the north Kent coast near Whitstable.



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