Wanjiazhai Dam Footbridge

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Wanjiazhai Dam Footbridge
Wanjiazhaizhen, Shanxi, China
(328) feet high / (100) meters high
1,640 foot span / 500 meter span


The gargantuan Wanjiazhai Dam Footbridge is still the longest span suspension footbridge in the world with a tower to tower length of 1,640 feet (500 meters) which would exceed both Japan's Kokonoe "Yume" Otsurihashi footbridge and several other large Chinese footbridge spans. The suspended section of the bridge is however only 1,532 feet (467 mtrs) - less then the 494 meter free span of the Charles Kuonen pedestrian footbridge in Switzerland. Open to the public for a nominal fee, the Wanjiazhai Dam bridge is located across China's great Yellow River in a remote and arid region of China near the Inner Mongolia Autonomous region.

The slender bridge was originally built for workers to get across the Yellow River gorge during the construction of the Wanjiazhai hydroelectric dam. Originally scheduled for removal in 2000 once the dam was completed, the dam personnel decided to keep it and so the span was rehabilitated and strengthened for long term use.

The bridge is reportedly only 115 feet (35 meters) above a full reservoir but based on a known dam height of 344 feet (105 meters) minus a foundation of approximately 35 meters and an extra 5 meters for the dam crest, I would estimate the bridge to be 328 feet (100 meters) above the old level of the Yellow River.



A construction view of the Wanjiazhai Dam with one of the bridge towers faintly visible at the edge of the river gorge plateau.


A view of the completed Wanjiazhai Dam with a blue suspension bridge tower visible in the upper left.





Wanjiazhai Dam Two Views.jpg
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