Panama Canal Expansion over 60% complete
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The expansion of the Panama Canal is due for completion in 2015. Image: Panama Canal Authority (ACP)
The first four new lock gates to arrive this month
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has announced that the multi-billion dollar Panama Canal Expansion, set to double the waterway’s capacity, is now over 60 percent complete.
According to the ACP, both entrances of the Canal are ready for bigger ships with the deepening and widening of the Atlantic and Pacific access channels now completed.
Meanwhile, the dredging of Gatun Lake is expected to be completed by the end of this year. The Pacific Access Channel has reached the design depth and the dam that will divide the new channel from Miraflores Lake is under construction.
“The Panama Canal Expansion will enhance the value of the Panama route,” said Panama Canal Administrator, Jorge L. Quijano.
“We are focused on the Third Set of Locks project, which is one of the key projects of the Expansion Program.”
The Third Set of Locks project registers a 50 percent progress. The new lock complex located at both the Pacific and Atlantic sides will feature three chambers, three water-saving basins per chamber, a lateral filling and emptying system and rolling gates.
The first four new lock gates will be arriving in the country later this month, which the ACP is calling an “important milestone for the Third Set of Locks project”.
Currently six months behind its eight-year project schedule, the ACP expects commercial transits to begin in mid-2015.