Wednesday, December 8, 2010

reaching "new heights" in construction

For those of you who have not seen the new Colorado River Bridge (aka the Hoover Dam Bypass Project) in person, you need to make it a point in the near future to take a trip to view this amazing feat of construction.  Living in Arizona for the past five years, Chuck and I were frequent visitors to Las Vegas.  We saw the first signs of construction in our many drives to the city of sin, and wondered what in the world they were starting to construct over the massive span of gorge that was a short ways away from the Hoover Dam.  (We did our research and found out that it was in fact the new Colorado River Bridge that was being built).  Years had passed since we took another drive over the Dam, and we absolutely could not believe our eyes....  There were these two gigantic arches leaning in towards one another, each protruding from separate sides of the gorge.  They were constructing them in a way that the two arches would connect at the middle when construction was completed.  It was the most complex undertaking that I've set my eyes on, and it was only what seemed like feet away from our miniscule car making its way over the Dam...

Construction on the nearly 2,000 foot long bridge (with a 1,060 foot twin-rib concrete arch) began in late January 2005 and traffic began using the Hoover Dam Bypass on October 19, 2010.  This signature bridge spans the Black Canyon (about 1,500 feet south of the Hoover Dam), connecting the Arizona and Nevada Approach highways nearly 900-feet above the Colorado River (info taken from http://www.hooverdambypass.org/).


This is what we saw!  Taken from my camera...




Here are more "professional" photos...although no pictures do this justice.  This enormous structure must be seen in person!!!


above two images from TravelPod

image via flickr


Completed!!!

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