Metsovo, Epirus, Greece
492 feet high / 150 meters high
771 foot span / 235 meter span
The highest bridge on the new Egnatia highway that goes across the length of Greece, the Metsovitikos is a prestressed concrete box girder bridge with a massive main span of 771 feet (235 mtrs), the largest beam bridge ever built in Greece. The span is also the highest bridge of any kind ever built in Greece rising approximately 492 feet (150 mtrs) above the Metsovitikos River.
Before the design team went with a concrete beam bridge, plans were underway for a one-of-a-kind tower-less inclined plane suspension bridge that would have crossed 492 feet (150 mtrs) over the Metsovitikos in one long span of 1,853 feet (565 mtrs). The innovative design was discarded when questions arose about a potentially unstable slope beneath one of the two massive mountaintop anchorages.
Construction began in the mid-1990s on the motorway which will have more than 1,600 bridges and dozens of tunnels when the entire 423 mile (680 km) route is completed by 2009. The ambitious highway now connects 4 major ports and 6 airports as well as links to Albania, Bulgaria, Macedonia and Turkey.
Metsovitikos Bridge satellite image just before the bridge was constructed. The highway tunnel entrance can be seen towards the lower right.