Gateshead Millennium Bridge, England
Pedestrians and cyclists can span the River Tyne in England on the world's first and only tilting bridge. The Gateshead Millennium Bridge is sometimes referred to as the “Blinking Eye Bridge” or the “Winking Eye Bridge,” due to its shape. But visitor must check the schedule, as it is only periodically open for sightseers and for major events. One of the principal reasons for opening the bridge is to allow the royal ships of the British Navy access in and out of the waterway.
This amazing “sunken” bridge in the Netherlands gives visitors access to a 17th Century Dutch fort by literally parting the waters that surround the fort. Designed by RO & AD Architects, the bridge is constructed out of Accoya wood, a hi-tech wood that is supposedly harder and more durable than some of the best tropical woods.
Juscelino Kubitschek Bridge , Brazil
Juscelino Kubitschek Bridge is a steel and concrete bridge that crosses Lake Paranoá in Brasília and connects the southern part of the lake with the central part of the city. Three large arches make up the bridge --with each crossing over the roadway midspan to land on the opposite side of the roadway. Radial cable stays between the roadway and the underside of each arch form a sort of tunnel for travelers. The road itself is three lanes in each direction, with a sidewalk on each side.
Jiaozhou Bay Bridge, Qingdao-Huangdao, China
Opened in June 2011, the 26.4 mile long Jiaozhou Bay Bridge in northeastern Shandong Province, is the world’s longest bridge across water. Nearly 450,000 tons of steel was used in constructing the bridge, which is supported by more than 5,000 pillars. The massive bridge was designed to be strong enough to withstand a magnitude 8 earthquake, typhoons, or the impact of a 300,000-ton vessel.
The Oresund Bridge crosses the Oresund strait and joins Sweden with Denmark. This marvel of ingenuity has a total length of 4.8 miles and was completed in 2000. The Oresund is a combined two-track rail and four-lane road bridge- tunnel. To prevent water from leaking in, a small artificial island was built around the tunnel's entrance.
Ponte Sant' Angelo, Rome, Italy
Ponte Sant’Angelo spans the Tiber River in Rome. The historic bridge is one of the eight stone bridges the Romans are known to have built over the Tiber between 200 B.C. and A.D. 260. Ponte Sant’ Angelo, originally named for Hadrian, the emperor who reigned during its construction, leads to his mausoleum, Castel Sant’ Angelo, a popular tourist attraction in Rome. Ten statues of angels line the now pedestrian-only bridge, commissioned by Pope Clement IX in 1669 from the famous artist Bernini.
Millau Viaduct, France
Designed by French structural engineer Michel Virlogeux and British architect Norman Foster, the Millau Viaduct is the 12th highest bridge in the world, at 890 ft above the road deck. The cable-stayed road-bridge spans the valley of the river Tarn near Millau in southern France. The project required about 127,000 cubic meters of concrete, 19,000 tones of steel for the reinforced concrete and 5,000 tones of pre-stressed steel for the cables and shrouds.
Henderson Waves Bridge, Singapore
The Henderson Waves Bridge, which connects the hilltops of Mount Faber Park and Telok Blangah Hill Park, are adorned with ribs that double as alcoves to provide shelter to the public. Visitors can look over the treetops, observe birds in their natural habitats, and admire the city’s skyline. At about 118 feet above street level, it is Singapore’s highest pedestrian bridge.
From centuries-old historic constructions to ultra modern futuristic designs, these bridges are architectural feats that boggle the mind.