creating mobility in southern China

The shenZhong link will improve traffic flow through the Guangdong province and support sustainable growth in the Pearl River Delta. 

Aesthetics. Functionality. Price.

These were the key pointers in the competition to design a new coast-to-coast link in southern China. The link, connecting the cities of Shenzhen and Zhongshan in the Guangdong province, will be 24 kilometres long and consist of two artificial islands, two bridges and the world’s widest immersed tunnel. 

The link will include eight lanes of traffic in dual directions and have a capacity of 90,000 cars per day. 

A classic kite provided the inspiration for the design of the link, which will be a significant landmark for the entire region as well as offering a more direct connection between the West and East sides of the river.

The ideas behind the design

Architect Poul Ove Jensen and Regional Vice President Lars Hauge take us through the spectacular design of the ShenZhong Link. Illustrations: DISSING + WEITLING architecture

Functionality, sustainability and aesthetics go hand in hand

Guangdong is one of the richest provinces in China. Besides agriculture and marine products, the strong provincial economy is largely based on its light and heavy industries, and a major upgrade of the infrastructure is required to support the continuous growth. 

“The increasing urbanisation puts high demands on the infrastructure solutions where functionality, sustainability and aesthetics go hand in hand,” says Lars Hauge, Regional Vice President, COWI.  

The ShenZhong Link design was awarded the first prize for its high level of technical excellence and aesthetic appearance.

The jury stated:

The design philosophy of the concept is advanced. The overall design of the link is magnificent, elegant and concise.


  • The ShenZhong Link will constitute a 24 km major transit corridor between Shenzhen and Zhongshan in Guangdong province, China.
  • The longest suspension bridges will have a bridge span of 1658 m and a twin box girder which will enable optimal wind stability.

  • The tunnel will set a world record as the widest immersed tunnel, with the widest road bores ever built.

  • The proposed tunnel concept is a post-tensioned segmental tunnel consisting of 31 sections in total, a typical section being 185 m long and the widest being up to 70 m wide. The width of the road bore varies from 19 m to 38 m.

  • The island is a multipurpose island featuring environmental and sustainable solutions. It hosts 15,000 m2 conference, office and restaurant facilities, as well as a promenade.

  • COWI and DISSING+WEITLING architecture were also responsible for the design of the 18 km long crossing of the Great Belt link in Denmark the Öresund Bridge linking Copenhagen with Malmö as well as the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macao link in China. 


Guangdong Province, China

2015 - ongoing

The Administration Center of the
Shenzhong Link Project


  • Concept Design for the International Design Competition
  • Development of the winning concept into Preliminary Design
  • Technical consultancy and design review during development of Preliminary Design, Detailed Design & Construction 

Get in contact

COWI-medarbeider Tina Vejrum

Tina Vejrum
Senior Technical Director
Major Bridges International, Denmark

Tel: +45 56401216