Sydney Harbour Bridge 80 years old

On March 19, 2012 the Sydney Harbour Bridge turned 80 years old, and has become a world icon that signifies Sydney.

Its arch spans 503 metres, the largest steel arch in the world, but it is not the longest. Here is the longest.

Chaotianmen Bridge
Official name  Chaotianmen Bridge
Carries  Trains, Motor vehicles, Pedestrians
Crosses  Yangtze and Jialing Rivers
Locale  Chongqing, China
Design  Arch bridge
Total length  1,741 m (5,712 ft)
Width  36.5 m (120 ft)
Height  142 m (466 ft)
Longest span  552 m (1,811 ft)
Construction begin  December 2004
Construction end  29 April 2009
Opened  30 April 2009
Coordinates  29.5888709°N 106.5772104°E.

The height of the Sydney Harbour Bridge arch soars 134 metres above sea level and its clearance for shipping is 43 metres.

The arch weighs in at 39,000 tonnes, and all up the steel works weigh some 59,000 tonnes.

The successful tender came from Dorman Long and Company from UK, with a contract price of 4,217,721 Pounds, 11 Shillings and 10 Pence, I wonder what that 11 Shillings and 10 Pence bought!

The general design was credited to Doctor J J G Bradfield and the New South Wales Department of Public Works.

Dr J J G Bradfield.

In its construction stage the bridge had two half arches, each half emanating from the north and south shores.

The Two halves of the arch.


HMAS Canberra about  to pass under the still
uncompleted Sydney Harbour Bridge in 1930.

Sydney siders awoke on the morning of August 20, 1930 to find the two halves had been joined as one during the previous night at 10 PM.

I am sure that Dr Bradfield must have breathed a huge sigh of relief when these two halves actually came together, they quite easily might have been offset, and caused chaos trying to bring them together.

On January 21 in 1932, the very last of 6 million rivets was driven home to complete this mighty work.

The Completed arch.

The Honourable John T Lang Premier of New South Wales was poised to officially open this engineering wonder on Saturday March 19, 1932, before a crowd estimated at a million.

Captain de Groot about to prematurely cut the ribbon.

Suddenly Captain Francis de Groot from the New Guard galloped up on his horse with sword drawn and slashed the ribbon with his sword, he was arrested, the ribbon rejoined and Jack Lang at last cut the ribbon and declared the Sydney Harbour Bridge open.

Premier Jack Lang cuts the ribbon to finally open the Sydney Harbour bridge.

Bridge roadway and deck.
The  roadway carries 8 lanes of traffic, 2 rail lines, a cycle path plus a pedestrian walk.

This Australian Icon continues to link both South and North Sydney across Sydney Harbour.




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