Despe-te que suas Bridge

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Despe-te que suas Bridge
Ponte Despe-te que suas
Nordestinho, São Miguel Island, Portugal
522 feet high / 159 meters high
607 foot span / 185 meter span
2011


Completed in late 2011, the Ponte "Despe-te que suas" briefly became Portugal's highest span before the Viaduto Corgo surpassed it in 2012. Despe's main span of 185 meters is now the longest in Portugal and possibly longer then any beam spans that have been constructed in Spain. The deep gorge is one of many on the island of São Miguel which is the largest in the Portuguese Archipelago of the Azores. With the greatest population of any of the islands, a decision was made to bypass the slow turns and steep descents of the older 2-lane road on the north side with a more modern 4-lane highway. Known as La autopista Scut Açores or the Scut Azores highway, the project required no less then 27 bridges on 60 kilometers of new roads of which Despe-te que suas Bridge is the largest.

Despe-te que suas's relatively short overall length of 385 meters has an asymmetrical layout with side spans of 344 feet (105 mtrs) and 312 feet (95 mtrs) flanking a large central span of 607 feet (185 meters). The single cell rectangular box girder is supported on 302 foot (92 mtr) and 217 foot (66 mtrs) piers that rise from their perch above the steep slopes of a lush, tree-filled river gorge.

Also on the a autopista Scut Açores several kilometers to the west is the Viaduto Achadinha Achada with a height in the 100 meter range.



Despe-te que suas Bridge Elevation


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


The gorgeous coastline of São Miguel island. Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


A wide view of the Despe-te que suas Bridge construction site showing the concrete segmental bridge sections lined up along the road on the far right of the image. Each precast bridge section is suspended along the yellow truss traveler before being "dropped" into place at the end of the beam.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


Image by ConstruGomes.


A map of São Miguel Island showing the mostly older 2-lane roads. The Ponte "Despe-te que suas" is located on the north side of the island near the very east end.


São Miguel is the largest of the 9 islands that make up Portugal's impressive Azores archipelago.


A topo of the northeastern part of São Miguel island with the deep cut of the Despe-te que suas crossing in the center. The older road zig zags down into the 150 meter deep valley.


Approximate location of Despe-te que suas Bridge crossing on northeastern São Miguel Island.


A "clean" view of the canyon before the highway and bridge were built.

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