Vasco da Gama Bridge (Portuguese: Ponte Vasco da Gama), located in Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, is a sea-crossing cable-stayed bridge across the Tagus River in the southeast. It was the longest bridge in Portugal and Europe and the ninth longest bridge in the world in 1998.
The Vasco da Gama Bridge was built to ease the heavy traffic flow on the Ponte 25 de Abril Bridge. It is the second sea-crossing building across the Tagus River. Construction of the bridge started in February 1995, with a maximum of 3,300 workers, and was completed in February 1998. The bridge finally opened to traffic on March 29, 1998, before the 1998 World Expo.
To commemorate the 500th anniversary of the famous Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama from Europe to India by sea, the Portuguese government named the bridge Vasco da Gama Bridge. The longest bridge in Europe is a monumental milestone and one of the achievements of Lisbon's modernization project. Let's learn more details about the size of the Vasco da Gama Bridge in this post.
Description of Vasco da Gama Bridge Size
The Vasco da Gama Bridge was designed by four companies; Kvaerner Technologies Ltd., EEG (Europe Etudes Gecti), COBA (Consultores para Obras, Barragens e Planeamento) and PROPONTE (Projectos de Pontes e Estruturas Especiais). The Vasco da Gama Bridge is expected to last up to 120 years. As designed, the bridge can withstand winds of 250 kilometers per hour (155 miles per hour) and earthquakes with a magnitude of 8.7 on the Richter scale.
The bridge is 30 meters (98 feet) wide, has six lanes, and has a speed limit of up to 120 kilometers per hour (75 miles per hour). In bad weather, such as strong wind, heavy rain, and fog, the speed will be limited to 90 kilometers per hour (56 miles per hour). When the daily traffic volume of the bridge reaches 52,000, the driveway on the bridge will be expanded from six to eight lanes.
Vasco da Gama Bridge Dimensions
The total length of the Vasco da Gama Bridge is 17.2 kilometers (10.7 miles), and its main span is 420 meters (1,378 feet) for the main navigation hole. The main tower is a reinforced concrete H-shaped tower with a height of 155 meters, with 192 stay cables. The 30-meter wide deck is 45 meters high above the sea surface.
|Total Length||17.2 kilometers (10.7 miles)|
|Width||30 m (98 ft)|
|Max. Height||148 m (486 ft)|
|Longest Span||420 m (1,378 ft)|
|Clearance Below||45 m|
Vasco da Gama Bridge was the longest bridge in Europe when it opened in 1998 and is still one of the longest in the world today. Its large scale forced engineers to factor in the curvature of the Earth during its construction. Undoubtedly, it is a superb feat of engineering, made up of several sections supported by pillars. You can find all the historical landmarks in the historic heart of the city, located just a few kilometers south of the bridge.