Longtanhe River Viaduct

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Longtanhe River Viaduct
龙潭河大桥
Langpingzhen, Hubei, China
645 feet high / 197 meters high
656 foot span / 200 meter span
2009


Located about 50 miles (80 km) south of the famous 3 Gorges region of the Yangtze River in China’s mountainous Hubei Province, the Longtanhe bridge is tie with Germany's Kochertal as the world’s largest beam bridge viaduct. The cable stayed Millau Viaduct in France is the world’s largest viaduct overall.

The definition of what constitutes a viaduct may be open to debate but Longtanhe follows the form with 3 repetitive and equal sized spans of 656 feet (200 meters) rather than just one central span flanked by much smaller approaches. The 584 foot (178 mtr) tall piers are the second highest in China and tied with Germany’s Kochertal as the 5th highest in the world. Only the Millau Viaduct, Labajin and Mexico’s El Carrizo and San Marcos bridges have taller piers. The term “viaduct” is also used within the name of Italy’s super high Platano and Italia bridges but the definition only applies to the approaches, not the main spans.

Longtanhe is just one of several amazing structures on the last 300 mile (483 km) link of the 1,350 mile (2,175 km) long G50 West Hurong expressway that now connects Shanghai on the Pacific coast with the cities of Chongqing and Chengdu in the west. Bypassing the 3 Gorges region from Yichang in the east to the city of Zhongxian in the west, this 4-lane engineering marvel is home to Siduhe, the world’s highest bridge with a roadway 1,550 feet (473 mtrs) above the river and Zhijinghe, the highest roadway arch bridge in the world. It also has more than half a dozen other bridges that exceed 500 feet (150 meters) in height including Mashuihe, another huge beam viaduct almost as large as Longtanhe. This more direct route bypasses one of the toughest and most mountainous stretches of the Yangtze River. What once took more than a day of travel on dangerous mountain roads or a Yangtze River boat can now be safely traversed in 5 hours.



Longtanhe River Viaduct Elevation


坐落在中国湖北省山区的长江三峡流域以南大约50英里(80公里)处的龙潭河大桥,是世界上最大的连续刚构体系的高架桥,这一纪录先前是有德国的科赫塔尔刚构高架桥。法国境内的米约大桥仍然是世界的最高的高架桥梁。

对于高架桥组成的定义可以是一个开放的讨论的内容,但是龙潭河大桥的结构形式是连续三跨相同的跨度的大桥,200米每跨,而不是仅仅有一个很大的中跨、两侧辅以相对很小的引桥。178米高的桥墩是中国最高,和德国的科赫塔尔大桥并位列世界第四高度。仅法国的米约大桥、墨西哥的埃尔卡里佐大桥和圣马科斯大桥有着更高的桥墩。词汇“Viaduct”也在意大利特高桥梁普拉塔诺高桥的名字中出现,但是其定义仅仅是用于引桥而非主桥。

龙潭河大桥仅仅是在沪蓉西高速公路西段最后300英里(483公里)路段上的那些令人惊叹咋舌的桥梁之一,而沪蓉线则是将太平洋西岸的上海与内地的重庆和成都等城市联系起来的交通大动脉。经由三峡库区,从东部的宜昌开始直到西部的忠县,这条4车道的工程师们造就的奇迹之路,是两座世界级高桥的“家”——桥面行车道在谷底河面之上473米的世界第一高度的四渡河大桥以及行车道高度位于世界第一的拱桥支井河大桥。这条奇迹之路上还有着6座高度超过150米的大桥,其中就有世界最高的梁式结构的高架桥梁——马水河大桥。这条更为直接的路线将与原先一条极为艰险、崎岖的长江流域的山区的一条公路线相并行。而原先需要一天的山区危险的车程或者长江上的航行,现在都能在5个小时之内实现。



For those who might be interested, the list below shows the World's 10 Tallest Bridges as measured from the top of the foundation to the top of the tower. All are suspension or cable stayed bridges.


1. Millau Viaduct, France 336 meters

2. Russky Island Bridge, Russia 320 meters

3. Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge, Japan 300 meters

4. Sutong Bridge, China 300 meters

5. Stonecutters Bridge, China 290 meters

6. Gwangyang Bridge, South Korea 270 meters

7. Jingsha Bridge, China 267 meters

8. Great Belt East Bridge, Denmark 254 meters

9. Edong Yangtze Bridge, China 242.5 meters

10. Mezcala Bridge, Mexico 242 meters


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


The 178 meter pier is one of the world's 10 tallest. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


A rock memorial for the bridge shows the 178 meter pier height. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


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A view looking north up the Longtan River. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


The massive viaduct towers over the town of Langpingzhen. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


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Image by Zhulong.com


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


Within a stretch of just 8 miles (13 kms), the West Hurong highway crosses 4 bridges that are nearly 200 meters or higher. Between these deep valleys there are several other viaducts and tunnels including the nearly 4 kilometer Siduhe tunnel.


image by www.enshi.cn


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


East end of the viaduct in 2011. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


Construction view in 2008. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


The towers were half completed in September of 2006. Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


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Image by Eric Sakowski / HighestBridges.com


2007 construction view.



Longtanhe and Kochertal Viaduct size comparison

Longtanhe and Kochertal are the two largest beam viaducts in the world. Longtanhe is slightly higher but both have piers that measure 584 feet (178 meters) tall from the top of the foundation to the underside of the box beam.


Longtanhe Viaduct satellite image.


A satellite view of the high bridges from Shuinan and Siduhe Bridges on the left side to Shuanghekou then Tieluoping and finally Longtanhe Viaduct on the right. There is no other section of highway in the world to have so many high bridges in such a short stretch. Click in for a closer look.

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