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Jeff Bezos' Yacht Is Too Big To Clear a Bridge, He Will Pay for It To Be Dismantled

Jeff Bezos will have to pay for a historic bridge in Rotterdam to be dismantled and put back together again. The iconic piece of infrastructure, called Koningshaven Bridge, is also referred to as the "De Hef" by the locals, and it was restored in 2017. Back then, the municipality promised never to dismantle it again.
De Hef bridge in Rotterdam 18 photos
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Well, what does the wealthiest man in the world have to do with a historic bridge in The Netherlands? As you may know, the former CEO of Amazon commissioned the Oceano company, based in Alblasserdam, to build a gigantic yacht for him.

It appears that the vessel is too large to go through the bridge's 40-meter clearance, and Bezos will have to pay for it to be dismantled and put back together again. The ship in question is 127 meters (ca. 416 feet) long, not just taller than the bridge's clearance.

The shipbuilding company has contacted the municipality of Rotterdam and requested the temporary dismantling of the bridge. If the request is approved, Oceanco and Bezos will reimburse the costs. For the moment, it appears the municipality is willing to approve the request, but this does not fare well with the Rotterdam Historical Society, as Rijnmond notes.

The Koningshaven Bridge dates back to 1878, and it was damaged by bombing during WWII, in 1940. It was one of the first buildings in the city to be restored after the war. Ever since 1993, the bridge has been replaced by the Willemspoort tunnel as the way to ensure crossing the river.

At the time, the municipality intended to demolish the bridge, but it faced fierce resistance from Rotterdam residents. Since that point, the bridge has been a national monument of Rotterdam. With that in mind, it takes one week for the bridge to be dismantled and another week to be put back together again.

Since the structure is a national monument, Rotterdam's Historical Society stepped in to address concerns about the move, and their representatives say that there are limits to what someone can do to the country's heritage, as Dutchreview reports.

Meanwhile, the shipbuilder's representatives have explained that it would be impractical to partially finish the ship, move it under the bridge, and then complete it somewhere else.

They also underline the fact that employment is important. Rotterdam is considered the maritime capital of Europe, and shipbuilding is an important activity within that sector, and the municipality considers it a pillar of importance.



Editor's note: For illustration purposes, the photo gallery shows Jeff Bezos' new yacht.

 
 
 
 
 

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