Work began Sunday on a bridge that will shave 50 kilometers off the trip from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay.
Bach Dang Bridge is expected to cost VND7.6 trillion (US$356.5 million) and cut the distance from the capital to the world heritage site from 180 kilometers to 130 kilometers, Thoi Bao Kinh Te Saigon (Saigon Times) Online reported.
The bridge will also narrow the distance from Ha Long to the nearby port city of Hai Phong by one third--or 25 kilometers.
The bridge is slated to be completed by the end of 2016, the news site said.
A statement from the Ministry of Transport said the bridge will stretch 5.4 kilometers across the Cam River, including the on-ramps at either end.
At 25 meters wide, the bridge was designed to include four vehicle lanes which will offer a maximum speed of 100kph.
The bridge is part of the Ha Long-Hai Phong express project, which was mostly funded by a joint venture of eight investors in Quang Ninh Province, which oversees Ha Long Bay.
The provincial government has agreed to contribute roughly five percent to the project's cost.