The bridge, created to withstand earthquakes and typhoons, was built using 400,000 tonnes of steel, enough to build 60 Eiffel Towers.
Vice premier Han Zheng said the bridge would help drive China's strategic blueprint for a "Greater Bay Area" around the Pearl River Delta modeled on other global economic dynamos like San Francisco Bay and Tokyo Bay.
Dubbed a mega infrastructure project, the 55-km HKZM bridge which includes a seven-km underwater tunnel was inaugurated within weeks of the opening of the high-speed railway link between Beijing and Hong Kong. The tunnel runs between two artificial islands, each measuring 100,000 square meters. Experts fear the bridge construction, in addition to expansion of the local airport, have sounded the death knell for the species, and governmental conservation efforts will prove to be too little too late.
Construction on the project began in 2009 but has been marred by delays and safety concerns.
In addition to political concerns, activists in Hong Kong are anxious about the safety of the bridge as local media reports in April showed that the interlocking concrete blocks of the artificial island that connect the bridge and tunnel were drifting away.
Wet And Mild: Warm Winter Predicted For Much Of U.S.
It ranked as the sixth-warmest winter on record, and everywhere, except the Pacific Northwest, was warmer than normal. Overall, no part of the U.S.is forecast to have below-average temperatures.
Paul Manafort rolls into court confined to a wheelchair
Manafort was convicted of eight counts in the tax and fraud trial in the Eastern District of Virginia earlier this year. Paul Manafort showed up in a wheelchair on Friday for an appearance in Virginia federal court.
Brexit Talks Stall At 'Moment Of Truth' Summit
The UK is set to leave the European Union in March, and the current plan is for a transition period to finish at the end of 2020. Sanchez told reporters that an agreement had been reached, though some thorny issues were left aside for further negotiation.
Officials are billing the 55km bridge as a key part of the Greater Bay Area plan, a campaign to connect Hong Kong and Macau to 11 Chinese cities to form a high-tech region to rival Silicon Valley.
The bridge is expected to open to traffic on Wednesday, though only certain vehicles - shuttles, freight cars, and private cars with permits - are allowed to cross. The bridge will be opened on October 24th and it promises to significantly reduce travel times between the three cities. At least nine workers on the Hong Kong side have died and officials told BBC News Chinese that nine had died on the mainland side, too.
In 2016, Hong Kong saw 56.7 million tourist arrivals, compared to 37.6 million for the United Kingdom, a much larger country.
"But they still need it as a political symbol or icon to remind Hong Kong people ... that you are connected to the motherland, with this very grand bridge".
The bridge's opening comes at a challenging time for China as it faces pressure from a trade war with the United States, volatile financial markets, mounting public debt and a slowing economy.
"Such a huge investment using the Hong Kong taxpayer's money. yet basically it is not open to us at all", said one comment on the South China Morning Post website. The area is also known for strong typhoons each year and rare marine species including Chinese white dolphins.