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Fernández opens Corredor Duarte tunnel (Rep. Dominicana)

 The Dominican Republic's President Leonel Fernández has opened the tunnel connecting the Núñez de Cáceres and 27 de Febrero avenues in capital Santo Domingo, part of the Corredor Duarte highway project.

Some US$40.6mn was added to the project's original US$164mn budget to allow for construction of two additional tunnels, state news agency Antena reported. 

A consortium formed of Brazil's Odebrecht and local firm Ingeniería Estrella is building the highway, completing construction of the first tunnel in 11 months. 

The second tunnel, connecting Ortega y Gasset avenue with the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo (UASD), is scheduled to be opened at end-November, BNamericas reported previously. 

The US$205mn Corredor Duarte highway project involves six overpasses and three tunnels to be completed in 2011. 

The initiative, partially financed by Brazil's national development bank BNDES, aims to reduce congestion in capital Santo Domingo, where some 1.1mn vehicles circulate each day.

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