Shipka Peak Tunnel in Bulgaria’s Balkan Mountain range will be carried out by the PSVT consortium. Bulgaria has awarded the design-build deal for the Tunnel, which is apart of the Gabrovo City bypass, for approximately US$ 200M.
The tunnel will run beneath Shipka Peak, which rises 1329 meters above sea level in Bulgaria’s Balkan Mountains and is part of the Bulgarka Nature Park. From Ruse to Haskovo, I-5 follows European route E85.
The project is considered part of Gabrovo City’s bypass. The town, located on the Yantra River, is also in the country’s geographic centre point. It is known as the international capital of satire and humour. Furthermore, it is Bulgaria’s longest town, extending 25 kilometres along the Yantra and only 1 km wide in some places. The bypass higher up the narrow valley has been under construction for several years.
Shipka Peak Tunnel project details
According to the bid, PVST would have a 34% stake in the project, with local consortium partners Hydrostroy and Patinzheneringstroy-T each having a 33% stake. The project will be funded by the Bulgarian government’s Transport Connectivity 2021-2027 Operational Programme. The Shipka tunnel is expected to significantly reduce travel times between Bulgaria’s northern and southern regions. The Balkan range separates the regions, making traffic highly dependent on weather conditions.
Meanwhile, the Bulgarian transport ministry announced that Bulgaria and Romania are planning to build five bridges across the Danube. Bulgaria is expected to start dredging along parts of the river this month, at a cost of around €7.7 million. Bulgaria and Romania will also submit a joint application to the EU for funding for river engineering work.