PEARL RIVER ESTUARY, China — As a 19-mile bridge between Hong Kong and China across the Pearl River estuary nears completion, Chinese officials are hoping it will bring more than economic integration at a time of growing tension between the two sides.
The bridge that snakes out over the blue estuary with soaring pylons, viaducts and towers using more steel than 60 Eiffel Towers, was first proposed in the late 1980s.
But it was opposed at the time by Hong Kong’s British colonial government, which was wary of development that might draw the city closer to Communist China.
Since Hong Kong returned to Chinese rule in 1997, however, there has been a flurry of projects integrating the…
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