Grand Canal of Nicaragua: Project Details

Part of the project includes a plan to build deep-water ports at both ends of the canal, with wharves and transshipment ports which can accommodate vessels of up to 200,000 dwt.

Monday, November 9, 2015

The environmental and social impact study for the construction of the Grand Canal of Nicaragua, published on the website of the Chinese concessionaire HKND, describes in detail the characteristics of the project and the impact it will have on the physical and biological resources in the area as well as its effects on economic and employment levels.

From the Social and Environmental Impact Study:

Specifics of the project:

The total length of the proposed project is approximately 275.5 kilometers (see Chapter 3, Project Description for a detailed description). It will start approximately 2 kilometers north of the Punta Gorda estuary on the Caribbean coast, making its way west and southwest, crossing Lake Nicaragua south of Ometepe island and entering the isthmus of Rivas north of the mouth of the Las Lajas River. First it will cross towards the southwest then northwest and finally continue on to the southwest along the Brito River entering the Pacific Ocean (see Figure 1.4-1). The main structures of the project will include two sets of locks, a country divided into three segments, a single dam, and jetties in the entry / exit channel of the Canal.

The project will consist of three main segments divided into two sets of locks (see Section 3.5.2). The locks will use a system of three adjacent chambers to raise and lower ships from the maximum Canal Navigation level and levels of the Caribbean Sea and Pacific Ocean.In addition, the locks will have a water saving system, consisting of three water recycling ponds associated with each of the chambers.

Read full study.

More on this topic

Grand Canal of Nicaragua: More Studies

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The concessionaire HKND has announced that it has hired BMT Asia Pacific to develop the plans for the operations of the canal and deepwater ports, and refine the operation model for the integrated Canal-Port.

While there is growing uncertainty about the financial viability of the project , the concessionaire HKND seems to be trying to dispel those doubts announcing the hiring of a specialized maritime infrastructure consulting firm to design plans for the proposed canal's operation.

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With the approval of the environmental and social impact study the Grand Canal Commission has facilitated the beginning of the construction of the waterway.

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January 2015

The consortium formed by the Nicaraguan Llansa Ingenieros, NAP Ingenieros y Nicaragua Ingenieros S.A has been subcontracted by HKND for preliminary works. reports that "...The works which began on December 22 consist of the construction of five temporary access roads, improving two existing access roads near port Brito and the West Lock proposed for the Canal, the clearing of a strip of 50 meters along the center line of the proposed route for the Canal and auxiliary facilities. "

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