The authorities of the city of Rotterdam in the Netherlands have authorized the partial dismantling of the Koningshavenbrug drawbridge, popularly known as De Hef.
This decision was made to allow the passage to the sea of the yacht of the former CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, which is currently under construction.
It should be remembered that, in 2017, the local authorities had promised not to dismantle the structure after the works were completed that same year.
The vessel is being built at the shipyard of the Oceanco company in the city of Alblasserdam. Once completed, it will have three masts and a length (length between bow and stern) of 127 meters, making it the largest sailing yacht in the world.
Aware of all the effort that this means, both the company and Bezos promised to reimburse the expenses associated with the dismantling.
The tycoon had requested this procedure since the 40-meter space offered by the bridge does not allow the transit of the boat.
The person in charge of this project, Marcel Walravens, defended the decision to dismantle the bridge and described it as “pragmatic”.
“This is a ship with tall masts that cannot pass over the bridge. The only alternative is to remove the center section,” he said in an interview.
However, this measure has not been without controversy. A local history society criticized the authorities after the announcement to dismantle Koningshavenbrug.
“Jobs are important, but there are limits to what can and should be done with our industrial heritage,” explained Ton Wesselink, who belongs to a Dutch city history society.