• The Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of the Congo, both countries sitting along the river’s banks, are named after it.
  • The two countries respective capital are set to be connected for the first time with a multi-purpose bridge, estimated to cost $550 million.

For decades, Congolese have been separated by the second longest river in Africa which is also coincidentally the world’s deepest recorded river but not anymore thanks to a shiny new  multi-purpose bridge.

Sitting on the opposite sides of the River Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, normally fondly referred to as DR Congo, better still Congo-Kinshasa and the Republic of Congo, whose commercial capital, Pointe Noire borders the South Atlantic Ocean have been separated with no means of connection despite sharing a heritage and a country.

Thanks though to a grand project already in motion, the two countries respective capital are set to be connected for the first time with a multi-purpose bridge, estimated to cost $550 million.

The announcement was made last week during the maiden Africa Development Bank investment forum in Johannesburg.

Also read: Africa’s longest suspension bridge is now open to the public for the first time

Once complete, the project which includes a toll bridge, a railway track, a road and a sidewalk, will provide alternative transportation means which is currently restricted to boats or planes.

The bridge which will span a 1,575-meter route is expected to give birth to special economic zones between the two neighbours, Republic of Congo Spatial Planning Minister Jean-Jacques Bouya said at the forum.

Officials from both sides of the river have signed an agreement to that effect, Bloomberg reported last week.

It is also the world’s deepest recorded river, with measured depths in excess of 220 m. Its overall length is put at 4,700 km (2,922 miles).

The Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of the Congo, both countries sitting along the river’s banks, are named after it.