The new yacht owned by Jeff Bezos, the billionaire founder of Amazon, is so large that a historic bridge in Rotterdam, the Netherlands has to be dismantled to allow her to pass through.
Bezos’ three-masted yacht, which was built in the Dutch city, will be too big to pass under the Koningshavenbrug, the bridge known to Rotterdammers as De Hef.
At 127 meters (417 feet) long, Bezos’ yacht is set to be the largest sailing yacht in the world when it is delivered at some point this year, according to Boat International.
The bridge was renovated in 2017 and the council pledged at the time it would never be dismantled again. But that promise is now set to be broken, according to Dutch broadcaster Rijnmond.
Bezos to come up with the cash to dismantle bridge for his yacht
Bezos and the Oceano shipbuilding company approached the city council about temporarily dismantling the bridge, which was built in 1927, to accommodate the boat.
Bezos will pay for the work himself, and the council has seemingly agreed to the plan despite the opposition of local historians.
De CEO van Amazon, Jeff Bezos, wil dat het middenstuk wordt weggehaald zodat zijn gigantische plezierjacht erdoorheen kan varen.https://t.co/o42d9jFer2
— Rijnmond (@RTV_Rijnmond) February 2, 2022
Project leader Marcel Walravens told local media the decision had already been made. “It is about a ship with high masts which cannot pass through the bridge,” he said. “The only alternative is to take out the middle section.”
Walravens said that, with proper preparation, it should only take just one day for the boat to pass through and then the section can be refitted.
Dismantling of the bridge “undermines historical heritage”
“Jobs are important, but there are limits with what you can and should do with our industrial heritage,’” said Ton Wesselink of the local history society Historisch Genootschap Roterodamum, according to Dutch News.
De Hef was heavily damaged in 1940 during the bombardment of Rotterdam and is now officially protected as a landmark.
With a net worth of around US $176 billion as of February 2022, Bezos is the second-wealthiest person in the world, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index and the third-wealthiest person according to Forbes.
Bezos is reportedly joining Russian-Israeli businessman Yuri Milner to fund a start-up that aims to prevent the effects of aging and potentially make people live forever.
The start-up that Bezos is investing in is called Alto Labs. It is out of the United States and United Kingdom and has already secured $270 million in funding.
Last July he entered space and stayed there in his own Blue Origin rocket for five minutes.
His own space exploration company Blue Origin launched into history, with the retail maven aboard the first crewed rocket, which was named New Shepard in a tribute to space pioneer Alan Shepard.