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The bridge is one of the oldest engineering inventions of mankind. From ancient times to the present day, many of the most unusual and grandiose structures have been built, connecting islands and even parts of the world. This list will not include the most famous and “deserved” bridges in the world – rather, we intend to add new ones to them, because the oldest bridge in the collection was built at the end of the 20th century, and the rest are even newer. And they are all very beautiful.

It would seem that after the construction of such a miracle as the famous “Golden Gate” in American San Francisco in the 1930s, humanity is unlikely to come up with something even more interesting. However, fantasy in “collaboration” with the latest technologies proves the opposite.

Panpo Bridge

South Korea, Seoul.
Built in 1982, the fountain opened in 2009

This 1,140-meter-long fountain bridge is located in the very center of the South Korean capital and is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s largest… “fountain bridge.” It was built directly over another bridge, the Jamsu Bridge, which was regularly flooded by the Han River during the rainy season.

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On each side of the bridge, 19 pumps operate, drawing water from the river and “shooting” it back from 380 water cannons at a distance of 20 meters. The powerful jets are illuminated by 10,000 LEDs, which are controlled by an electronic program capable of changing the pressure and color scheme. This creates the effect of “dancing water”, when the streams and light beams merge into one.

Storsezandet Bridge

Norway, Møre og Romsdal district.
Built in 1989

In 2005, this bridge was recognized in Norway as the “Building of the Century”. It is part of the highway that connects the island of Averoy with the mainland of the country. The 260-meter structure has an arched shape and in its middle deviates into the sea by 23 meters from the base. Initially, they wanted to make the bridge straight and horizontal, but appropriate changes were made to the project. Why – history is silent. It is possible that it was to attract tourists: after all, for 10 years after construction, they charged a fee for traveling through it.

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When looking at the structure from certain angles, an optical illusion arises – the illusion that in the middle the bridge… ends. That is why it received the name “Bridge to Nowhere”, and among local residents it is better known as the “Drunken Bridge”. Indeed, while driving along it, many drivers begin to feel slightly dizzy. However, no serious car accidents were recorded on it.

Oresund Bridge

Sweden, Malmo and Denmark, Copenhagen.
Built in 2000

The Oresund Bridge is built over the strait of the same name and connects the Swedish city of Malmö and the Danish capital of Copenhagen. The nearly eight-kilometer structure includes a two-track railway and a four-lane motorway. It is the largest such structure in Europe.

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Construction of the bridge took four years and ended three months ahead of schedule, despite a dozen unexploded World War II bombs that were found at the bottom of the strait during the work. When the bridge was ready, a symbolic meeting between the Danish Prince Frederik and the Swedish Crown Princess Victoria took place in the middle of it. The only thing that local residents don’t like is the unreasonably high price of travel through the structure – more than 40 euros.

Slauerhof Bridge

The Netherlands, Leeuwarden.
Built in 2000

Externally resembling an excavator, this automatic lift bridge is notable for the fact that its support is not under its deck, but on pylons on the side of the road.

Bert_Kaufmann / Wikipedia.org Bert_Kaufmann / Wikipedia.org

The structure consists of a platform measuring 15 by 15 meters, located on one side, and a counterweight on the other, thanks to which the platform rises up, clearing the passage for ships. All this happens in a very short time, so drivers have to stand no longer than, say, at a railroad crossing.

Hanzhou Bay Bridge

China, Shanghai.
Built in 2008

The design of this 36-kilometer bridge was discussed and finalized for 10 years until it was finally approved in 2003. At the time of its completion (in 2008), it was the longest bridge in the world, and to this day it retains the title of the longest transoceanic bridge on the planet. The cost of the grandiose construction was about 1.5 billion euros. After its construction, the route between Shanghai and another major city in China, Nimbo, was shortened by more than 320 kilometers.

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There is a road on the bridge with three lanes in each direction. An artificial island has been erected in the middle, on which there is a rest area for passing drivers, with many restaurants, shops and even hotels. There is also an observation deck there, which attracts a large number of tourists who come here to admire the sea tides.

Gustave Flaubert Bridge

France, Rouen.
Built in 2007

The largest drawbridge in Europe, named after the famous French writer, connects the two banks of the Seine River in the city of Rouen. The total length of the bridge is 670 meters, and it combines a highway and a pedestrian road.

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The main 100-metre span can, with the help of special mechanisms, rise above the river to a height of 55 meters in 15 minutes to provide passage for sailing ships and high-masted warships that gather in the ancient capital of Normandy for the annual festival of the Rouen Armada.

Millau Viaduct

France, Millau.
Built in 2004

The high-speed 2.5-kilometer bridge in southern France across the Tarn River valley was originally built to relieve congestion on the national highway number 9, which was experiencing huge congestion at the end of the summer holiday season.

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The Millau Viaduct holds several world records. It is the highest roadway in the world – at its highest point it is 270 meters above the ground. In addition, the bridge has the highest support with a pylon, which is almost 20 meters higher than the Eiffel Tower.

Octavio Frias de Oliveiro

Brazil, Sao Paulo.
Built in 2008

The only bridge in the world with an unusual support in the form of the letter “X”, which is fixed with the help of 140 cables. LEDs are built into each cable, which illuminate the entire structure in different colors.

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In addition to the purely aesthetic component, “Octavio Frias de Oliveiro” also has practical functions. The support supports two road surfaces located at a height of 12 and 24 meters from the ground, which have a capacity of over five thousand cars per hour. In this way, the bridge helps ease traffic in the center of São Paulo, one of the busiest metropolises on the planet.

Russian Bridge

Russia, Vladivostok.
Built in 2012

The construction of a bridge that would connect Vladivostok with Russky Island was discussed back in the first half of the 20th century. Several projects were proposed at different times in the last century, but none of them were ever implemented. Construction of the bridge began only in 2008, as part of the city’s preparation for the APEC summit, held in September 2012.

Vitaly Ankov / RIA Novosti

The work was carried out at an accelerated pace and in difficult climatic conditions. The temperature amplitude in the Far East sometimes reaches 60 degrees. Plus storm winds, high waves, and ice in winter. The construction costs of the bridge amounted to 32 billion rubles. As a result, Russia got its own record-breaking bridge. This is the largest cable-stayed bridge in the world – the length of its main span is 1,104 meters, and the height of its pylons is only 20 meters lower than the Millau Viaduct mentioned earlier.

Vitaly Ankov / RIA Novosti Vitaly Ankov / RIA Novosti RIA News Vitaly Ankov / RIA Novosti

However, it was not without criticism: they argue about the feasibility of spending on such a structure. For example, the bridge’s carrying capacity, equal to 50 thousand cars per day, exceeds the population of Russky Island by almost 10 times.

“Winding Bridge”

China-Hong Kong
The project has not yet been implemented

This structure would be part of a grandiose project consisting of a complex system of roads, bridges and tunnels between the Chinese metropolises of Macau, Zhuhai and the city-state of Hong Kong.

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China and Hong Kong have different traffic systems: in the first case, right-hand traffic, and in the second, left-hand traffic, a legacy of the British Empire. The proposed design for a new bridge between the states involves the construction of a structure in the form of the number “8”: so that cars entering the interchange on the right side will then end up on the left, and vice versa. In this case, according to the developers, there will be no need to create a traffic light system and additional interchanges. /m

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