Rotterdam Ships have been sailing under the Koningshaven Bridge in the middle of Rotterdam for more than 95 years. The middle part of the former railway bridge can be raised up to 40 meters. Now the Dutch may have to disassemble the industrial monument for Jeff Bezos. Because his new superyacht is too big. Bezos had commissioned a shipyard near Rotterdam with the construction for 430 million euros. The 127 meter long three-masted ship is scheduled to be launched this year, but has not yet been able to pass through the port city because of the bridge.
Bridge dismantling for Jeff Bezos is said to have already been decided
Initially, it was said that the shipbuilder Oceanco had applied to the city of Rotterdam to temporarily dismantle the middle section of the bridge. The city also told the Dutch media that it had agreed to this. “From an economic point of view and in terms of job preservation, the municipality considers this a very important project,” said Marcel Walravens, the city’s project manager, to regional broadcaster Rijnmond.
Mayor denies breaking bridge for Jeff Bezos
But none of this is said to have happened. On Thursday evening, the mayor backtracked: “There hasn’t been a decision yet, not even an application for a permit,” Ahmed Aboutaleb told the Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad. He couldn’t understand the excitement. The city will only agree to dismantling a bridge if it is clear who will bear the costs and damage can be ruled out. It is not yet known whether Oceanco intends to pass on the costs to Jeff Bezos.
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Rotterdammer outraged by bridge dismantling for superyacht
According to the Dutch media, many Rotterdammers reacted with outrage. “This man made his money from downsizing, tax evasion and avoidance of regulations. And now we have to tear down our beautiful national monument?” Stephan Leewis wrote on Twitter. That really goes a step too far, according to the politician from the Green Party GroenLinks.
As early as the 1990s, there were major protests against the city government’s plan to completely demolish the Koningshaven Bridge, reports the New York Times. Even then, no trains ran over the landmark called De Hef by the people of Rotterdam.
Bezo’s mega yacht was already causing problems
Jeff Bezos’ new yacht, working title Y721, is believed to be one of the largest sailing ships ever built in the Netherlands. This is not the first time the ship has caused problems. According to the medium Bloomberg, their gigantic sails make them unsafe for helicopter landings. Bezos had to commission a support ship for this.
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