Gateshead Millennium Bridge is an amazing pedestrian and cyclist tilt bridge which is spanning the River Tyne in England. The two graceful curves that compose the bridge are spanning between Gateshead’s Quays arts quarter on the south bank of the river, and the Quayside of Newcastle on the north bank. Due to its shape and its tilting method the bridge is also known as the ‘Blinking Eye Bridge’ or the ‘Winking Eye Bridge’.
To let boats pass underneath, the whole assembly rotates as a single, rigid structure. While the arch tilts lower, the pathway rises and a pathway over the river is formed. Each opening and closing of the bridge takes only four and a half minutes.
Gateshead Millennium Bridge was conceived with the purpose to retain a clear channel for shipping while maintaining a low level crossing for cyclists and pedestrians.
It was opened to the public on 17 September 2001 while the official opening was made by Queen Elizabeth on May 2002. Wilkinson Eyre, a London-based architecture firm and structural engineers Gifford have conceived and designed this amazing structure. For the innovative and creative design Gateshead Millennium Bridge received numerous awards during time.
Interesting facts about Gateshead Millennium Bridge
-It was fully constructed before being installed as a single piece
– It was transported section by section by the Asian Hercules II (one of the world’s largest floating cranes)
– Stretches 126 metres across the River Tyne
– Sits on 19,000 tonnes of concrete
– Contains so much steel that 64 double decker buses can be made of it
– Can resist to a collision produced by a 4,000 tonne ship that travels at 4 knots
Is powered by eight electric motors – enough power to run more than eight Ford Focus cars
Gateshead Millennium Bridge is a real master piece that combines in a smart way the necessities with creativity. Would you like to cross it once?
Sources: gateshead.gov.uk, wikipedia
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