Thursday, September 05, 2013
Timeshare Travel - New Bridge for San Francisco Bay
A graceful white tower is part of the self-anchored suspension span of the new Bay Bridge, which officially opened this past Monday, September 2, 2013.
Whether you cross the Bay Bridge as a driver, a bicyclist or a pedestrian, you’ll undoubtedly be taken with its gleaming white paint job, its graceful tower and its spider web of suspension cables, not to mention its sweeping views, which can now be easily enjoyed unlike the old bridge which blocked them.
The new span replaces a structure that was damaged during the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. It is designed to withstand the strongest earthquake estimated by seismologists to occur at the site over a 1,500-year period.
The Bay Bridge is actually composed of several parts, beginning with a sleek skyway from the Oakland side that leads to the new, self-anchored suspension bridge - with its looming, single white tower.
The span then leads onto Yerba Buena Island in the middle of the bay. On the other side of the island, the old double-decker west span, which has been retrofitted to higher earthquake standards, completes the crossing to San Francisco.
But as esthetically impressive as the $6.4 billion new span may be, its graceful looks overshadow its main mission: to not only remain standing after a devastating earthquake but to be able to carry emergency vehicles and supplies across the bay soon after the ground stops shaking.
Seismic engineers who designed the span used a variety of innovative techniques, some borrowed from offshore construction, to help make the bridge strong, yet flexible enough to withstand the greatest seismic forces imaginable.
Before installing any of the innovations on the span, pieces were built and tested in laboratories from Reno to San Diego.
Engineers admire the old Bay Bridge, saying it was meticulously designed and well-assembled. But it is riddled with seismic deficiencies because when the span was built, seismic engineering was neither common nor sophisticated.
The new span includes a 15.5 foot-wide bike and pedestrian path that will be extended onto the island after the old eastern span is removed.
Check out the many budget-friendly San Francisco timeshare rentals available.
Source: San Francisco Chronicle
Photo Credit: en.wikipedia.org