The Chesapeake Bay is the deepest bay where the Atlantic Ocean extends from south to north into the eastern inland of the United States, between Maryland and Virginia. Due to the twists and turns of the bay, it provides excellent conditions for ships to dock. Baltimore at the head of the bay and Norfolk at the mouth are both internationally famous seaports.
In order to facilitate the traffic on both sides of the Gulf and domestic and foreign tourists who come to travel here, the U.S. government invested in constructing the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, which opened to traffic in 1952.
It is a modern engineering marvel and also a tourist attraction. Tourists can buy various souvenirs on the bridge, including food, wine, crafts, and more. There is also a scenic pier for overlooking and fishing, which is a great place to stop and admire the views of the Chesapeake Bay. Let's learn more about the large size of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.
Description of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Size
The Chesapeake Bay Bridge crosses the Gulf on the Chesapeake Bay in the United States and connects the state's rural Eastern Shore region with the urban Western Shore. It is a two-way sea-crossing bridge that crosses the bay from Sandy Point, Maryland (near Annapolis) to Kent Island. As part of U.S. Routes 301 and 50, the bridge is busy and has become a point of traffic congestion, particularly during peak and summer hours. The bridge has five lanes, and the authorities levy a fee. Rates range from the lowest for two-axle to the highest for six-axle.
But since the bridge was built, it has caused a lot of trouble for the drivers passing by. In order to facilitate the smooth passage of ships, the bridge is raised 185 feet above the water. Many drivers are always careful to drive extremely slowly, which not only causes traffic jams but also puts pressure on the bridge itself.
Dimensions of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge
The original Chesapeake Bay Bridge, with a length of 7 km (4.35 miles), was the world's longest continuous over-water steel structure. In 1969, an expansion of the bridge was approved, and construction was completed in 1973. The original portion of the bridge became the eastbound route, while the new westbound is 6.97 km (4.33 miles). The bridge has a main span of 488 meters (1,600 feet). More dimensions are in the following table.
|Length||7 km (4.35 mi)||6.97 km (4.33 mi)|
|Width||8.5 m (28 ft)||11.6 m (38 ft)|
|Height||107.9 m (354 ft)||115.5 m (379 ft)|
|Clearance Below||56.7 meters (185 ft)||56.7 meters (185 ft)|
|Longest Span||488 m (1,600 ft)||488 m (1,600 ft)|
The bridge is not only a roadway for vehicles but also one of the famous attractions. On the artificial island in the middle of the bridge, people can not only watch the spectacular view of the mouth of the Atlantic Ocean and the busiest shipping lane in the world. In addition, the bridge is opened once a year for the public to visit on foot or by bicycle. Take a Chesapeake Bay Bridge Walk to enjoy the incredible scenery from the most scenic over-water structures.