LANGKAWI - The Langkawi Sky Bridge, one of the nation's biggest tourist attractions, is set to open after it was closed for 30 months due to maintenance.
Deputy Finance Minister I Datuk Ahmad Maslan said the RM16.8mil (S$6.26mil) upgrading works were almost completed.
"The bridge will be opened partially to visitors by middle of this month," he said, after touring the project site here yesterday.
He said works included structural strengthening of the Sky Bridge, upgrading of both platforms and painting of eight towers.
"Work on the bridge and top platform is running concurrently, and is expected to be completed by April."
Ahmad hoped that the project would be completed in time for the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition 2015 in March.
He said workers faced difficulty bracing the strong winds and harsh weather when lifting up materials for the project.
"That was what brought about the delay," he said.
He said the top station would be upgraded with stainless steel railings and a concrete floor for visitors to admire a 360° panoramic view of the entire island.
Once the project had been completed, he said, the 125m-long bridge, which stands at an altitude of about 700m above sea level, supported by a single pylon in the middle, would have stainless steel main structures, a 10m-long glass walkway and an inclinator.
The curved Sky Bridge, on the peak of Gunung Mat Chinchang, was first opened to the public in February 2005.
It was then closed in July 2012 for maintenance, but the reopening was put off several times, reportedly because of delays in getting funds and foreign consultants for the works.
The Sky Cab, which provides an aerial link from Teluk Burau to the peak of Gunung Mat Chinchang, remained in operation and visitors are still able to ride up the hill and enjoy the scenery on another platform, which is open.
The Sky Bridge is also dubbed "the world's scariest suspension bridge", as voted by TripAdvisor.