The Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge is the world’s longest bridge with a length of 102.4 miles (164.8 kilometers), spanning from Shanghai to Nanjing. It is located in the Jiangsu province of China, and is part of the Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway.
This bridge was originally built to transport trains on one of China’s premier high-speed railways over an incredible distance.
- Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge was opened on June 30, 2011. The total cost of the project was $8.5 billion (U.S. dollars).
- The construction of the bridge took 4 years to be completed with a workforce consisting of nearly 10,000 people.
- The main purpose of the bridge is to solve the railway traffic in the area.
- It is sturdy enough to withstand natural disasters like typhoons and up to a magnitude 8 earthquake, and also direct impacts from naval vessels that weigh up to 300,000 tons!
- This bridge hosts a train line that runs between Shanghai and Nanjing in East China’s Jiangsu province.
- For most of its journey, the Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge follows the flow of the Yangtze River.
- A 5.6-mile (9-kilometer) long section of the bridge spans over the open water of Yangcheng Lake. This section alone required 2,000 support pillars.
- A total 450,000 tons of steel was used to construct this impressive structure.
- The rail transport segment of this bridge named Langfang–Qingxian viaduct covers a distance of 70.8 miles (113.9 kilometers).
- This bridge is also considered part of the Beijing-Shanghai High Speed Railway.
- Since completion of this bridge, travel time from Ningbo to Jiaxing has reduced from 4.5 hours to just 2 hours!
This bridge falls into viaduct category, which means it is composed of several small spans for crossing a valley or a gorge. Most notably, it is in the Yangtze River Delta, a region known for its varied landscape.
The Danyang-Kunshun Grand Bridge crosses over a number of different terrains, including rivers, canals, chasms, streams, flatlands, hills, lakes, and fields of rice paddies. Currently, it holds the Guinness World Record for longest bridge in the world.
Early Planning Stage of the Project:
China has been working since the early 2000s to transform its industrial and transportation abilities to better suit the needs of the people living and working throughout the country.
This began a sort of “bridge revolution” during which the government began funding large-scale bridge-building projects. After many successful projects and world records for impressive structures, they began planning their most impressive feat yet: building a bridge that would connect the cities of Shanghai and Nanjing. Many engineers, architects and designers from different countries were involved in the task of building the world’s longest bridge.
The building plans were finalized in 2006, and construction began shortly thereafter. They initially estimated a four-year timescale to build this bridge and despite challenging terrain, canals, lakes and many other obstacles, it was built within the original estimate of four years.
Overcoming the terrain challenges:
Designers decided to build a viaduct because of the terrain challenges. A viaduct is a type of bridge that has many smaller sections that are connected. These shorter spans give flexibility required to rise and fall, twist and turn with changing landscapes. This well-engineered design helps the bridge to remain sturdy for a long distance.
The Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge had to be reinforced because most areas of land in the Yangtze River’s flood plain consists of soft soil instead of firm bedrock. Building a bridge without concrete reinforcements in places where the land is very “soft” can be dangerous because the land might shift, weakening the bridge structure, and leading to a disaster!
Engineers and builders took all of these challenges into consideration when designing and constructing this incredibly large bridge and it is safe for visitors to use this railway to more efficiently travel in the Jiangsu Province of China.
Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge Root Map: –
Question & Answers: –
Ques. What was the main purpose of building this bridge?
Ans. This bridge was built as part of China’s premier high-speed railways to more quickly transport people over an incredible distance, and to solve railway traffic in the region.
Ques. What type of bridge is the Danyang Kunshan Grand Bridge?
Ans. It is classified as a viaduct because it consists of several small sections.
Ques. How many workers were employed during the construction of this bridge?
Ans. Approximately 10,000 people took part in planning and building this engineering feat.
Ques. How many years did the bridge take to complete?
Ans. The construction of the bridge took just over 4 years to complete.
Ques. The section that goes across open waters of Yangcheng Lake in Suzhou and this part is built on top of how many pillars?
Ans. It is built on the top of 2,000 pillars.
Ques. What is the approximate height of the bridge from the ground?
Ans. The average height of the bridge from the ground is 100 feet.
Ques. What is the bridge’s average width?
Ans. This bridge’s average width is measured to be 260 feet (about 80 meters).
Ques. When did construction of this bridge begin?
Ans. Construction began on April 18, 2006.
Ques. When was construction work on the bridge completed?
Ans. The bridge was completed on November 15, 2010.
Ques. When was the bridge was officially opened?
Ans. In June 2011
Ques. How long is the Langfang-Qingxian viaduct?
Ans. The Langfang-Qingxian viaduct is measured to be 114 kilometers(71 miles).
Ques. What is the largest body of water crossed by this bridge?
Ans. The largest body of water it crosses is Yangcheng Lake, spanning an area of about 5-and-a-half miles (9 kilometers).
Danyang-Kunshan Grand Bridge Fact Sheet: –
|Construction started||Early 2006|
|Total length||102.4 miles (164.8 kilometers)|
|Opened for use||June 30, 2011|
|Project cost||8.5 billion dollars|
|Body of water||Yangcheng Lake|
|Capacity||18 million visitors annually|
|Average height from ground||328 feet (100 meters)|
|Average width||260 feet (80 meters)|
|Location||Yangtze River Delta Jiangsu Province, China|