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Top ten most famous bridge in the world

  • Author:Max
  • Release on:2016-06-25

Hangzhou Bay is an immense estuary delta that divided the Chinese municipality of Jiaxing from neighbouring Ningbo. The idea for the bridge was touted for many years before construction even reached the drawing board, but the bridge was eventually completed in 2007. It was not opened to the public until 2008, after a period of rigorous and stringent testing. The area where the bridge lies is prone to not only typhoons, but also some of the highest tidal forces in the world and, as if that was not enough to be going on with, earthquakes! To account for all these adverse forces, the builders used steel piles, rather than the more usual concrete ones, and employed the cable-stayed bridge formation that is recognised as one of the strongest and most stable methods of bridge-building. Stretching some 22 miles across the bay, the bridge leapt into the top ten of trans-oceanic bridges on its completion and immediately cut travel times between the two regions from around 250 miles to a mere 50.

Not one for those scared of heights, the Royal Gorge Bridge in Colorado, USA stands some 291 metres from the ground at its highest point. This made it the highest bridge in the world from the time of its construction until as late as 2003. The bridge was purposefully built as a tourist attraction in 1929 and it can be found inside an amusement park, surrounded by rides and carnival attractions. Sadly, the bridge and many of the attractions were damaged by fire in June 2013 and the park has only recently partially re-opened to the public (March 2014). It is hoped that the park will be fully operational by August 2014.

Opened in 1932 the Sydney Harbour Bridge has become synonymous with Sydney's other great attraction, the magnificent Opera House that sits alongside the bridge. It is the world's tallest steel arch bridge, and is sometimes affectionately known as 'The Coat-hanger' because of its arched appearance. The bridge caters for all forms of transport – save trams! There were originally two tram lines but these were converted into spare vehicle roadways. Trains, bicycles and even pedestrians can find their way across the bridge, which was conceived of in 1815, although it would be almost a hundred years before the first feasible plans were drawn up. The bridge was opened on both sides simultaneously (not without some drama) and hailed as a huge success and the saving of many lives during the Great Depression by providing employment. Today, tourists can climb the arch of the bridge going over the top to enjoy the breath-taking views from the summit in a strenuous, three-and-a-half hour climb that ascends on the eastern side and finishes on the west.

Originally called The Stone Bridge, Charles Bridge's first stone was laid by King Charles IV, at 5.31am on the 9th of July 1357. The time and date are precisely recorded because Charles was deeply interested in numerology and it was felt that this was an auspicious time for the bridge building process to begin. (The date and time form a 'bridge' 1357:9/7:5.31 which Charles believed would imbue the construction with strength and durability.) The bridge today offers something of a short history of Prague and Czechoslovakia as a whole featuring statues of characters from various points in history. A recent (and hotly decried, in some circles) renovation saw the original statues being replaced with modern replicas and the originals carefully removed to a museum. Whenever you are in Prague, be sure to wander over the Charles Bridge and stare into the water of the Vltava River as you bask in the history of this historically significant bridge.

6.Millau Viaduct

The drive from Paris to Spain, especially if following a route near the small town of Millau, was known to be problematic, especially in summer, when hundreds of tourists and day-trippers would crowd the roads, and the idea of a bridge over the Tarn Valley was quickly mooted and accepted. The authorities held a contest, inviting architects and designers to come up with possible ideas and routes, and the best of these was selected. Despite fierce opposition from various parties (some felt that Millau would lose all passing trade, others felt that the toll charge on the bridge would mean that few people used it and still others advocated a different route, a little longer but that would have meant a cheaper project) the bridge is well used and appreciated by many who remember getting stuck on the overcrowded small roads below! The bridge has won various awards, including the prestigious Outstanding Structure Award from the International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering in 2006.

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