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The Bridge Portal

A bridge is a structure built to span a physical obstacle, such as a body of water, valley, or road, without closing the way underneath. It is constructed for the purpose of providing passage over the obstacle, usually something that can be detrimental to cross otherwise. There are many different designs that each serve a particular purpose and apply to different situations. Designs of bridges vary depending on the function of the bridge, the nature of the terrain where the bridge is constructed and anchored, the material used to make it, and the funds available to build it.

Most likely the earliest bridges were fallen trees and stepping stones, while Neolithic people built boardwalk bridges across marshland. The Arkadiko Bridge dating from the 13th century BC, in the Peloponnese, in southern Greece is one of the oldest arch bridges still in existence and use.

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Pulaski Skyway full view.jpg

The General Pulaski Skyway is a series of cantilever truss bridges in the northeast part of the U.S. state of New Jersey. The highway carries four lanes of U.S. Route 1/9 for 3.5 miles (5.6 km) between the far east side of Newark and Tonnelle Circle in Jersey City, passing over Kearny. It is known as a "skyway" because it travels high above the meadows to avoid drawbridges across the Passaic and Hackensack Rivers, bridging each at a height of 135 feet (41.1 m). It also crosses over the New Jersey Turnpike, many local roads, and several rail lines. The skyway is named for General Kazimierz Pułaski, the Polish military leader who assisted in training and commanding Continental Army troops in the American Revolutionary War.

Trucks are prohibited from the Pulaski Skyway for the "safety and welfare of the public", due to its outdated design. They must use an alternate route known as U.S. Route 1/9 Truck, a series of local roads through Jersey City, Kearny and Newark that carried traffic before the Skyway was built. Pedestrians and bicycles are also banned, as the road is a freeway with no sidewalks.

The Pulaski Skyway opened in 1932 as the last part of the Route 1 Extension, one of the first superhighways in the United States. The structure has undergone only minor changes, and was added to the National Register of Historic Places on August 12, 2005. The construction of the skyway was also notable for a labor conflict involving Jersey City mayor Frank Hague, which ended up turning him against unions.

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Manhattan Bridge Construction 1909.jpg

Manhattan Bridge during its construction in 1909.

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Albert Fink

Albert Fink (October 27, 1827 – April 3, 1897) was a German civil engineer. He is best known for his railroad bridge designs, and devising the Fink truss.

Born in Lauterbach, Hesse, Germany, he studied architecture and engineering at the Polytechnic school in Darmstadt, and graduated in 1848. In 1849 he emigrated to the United States. He soon found work with the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad as a draftsman, and became chief office assistant to Benjamin H. Latrobe. In this position he oversaw the design and construction of buildings and bridges. With the construction of the road between Cumberland, Maryland and Wheeling, West Virginia (then in the state of Virginia). Fink supervised much of the design, and oversaw the building of some of the first iron bridges in the nation, including that over the Monongahela River in Fairmont, West Virginia. It was this bridge that first implemented his design of the Fink truss, and was in fact in its time the longest iron railroad bridge. With the completion of this portion of road, the section between Grafton and Parkersburg, West Virginia was commenced, and many of the bridges and tunnels of this route were also supervised by him. He was also during this time a consulting engineer of the Norfolk and Petersburg railway, which was at the time building the bridge at Norfolk, Virginia. He left the Baltimore and Ohio railroad in 1857 to become the assistant of George McLeod, chief engineer of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad. Under them he built numerous bridges, including the Green River Bridge in Kentucky, then the longest iron bridge in the nation, a bridge in Nashville, Tennessee over the Cumberland, and one over the Ohio at Louisville, Kentucky, which at one mile in length was the longest truss bridge of its time.

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Bridge

Bridge types: Arch bridge, Aqueduct, Bailey bridge, Bascule bridge, Beam bridge, Box girder bridge, Cable-stayed bridge, Caisson, Cantilever bridge, Cantilever spar cable-stayed bridge, Clapper bridge, Covered bridge, Curling bridge, Drawbridge, Extradosed bridge, Folding bridge, Footbridge, Girder bridge, Inca rope bridge, Jetway, Lattice truss bridge, Log bridge, Mabey Logistic Support Bridge, Moon bridge, Plate girder bridge, Pontoon bridge, Retractable bridge, Self-anchored suspension bridge, Segmental bridge, Side-spar cable-stayed bridge, Simple suspension bridge, Skew arch bridge, Step-stone bridge, Stressed ribbon bridge, Submersible bridge, Suspension bridge, Swing bridge, Taper Suspension Bridge, Tied arch bridge, Tilt bridge, Through arch bridge, Toll bridge, Transporter bridge, Trestle, Truss arch bridge, Truss bridge, Tubular bridge, Vertical lift bridge, Viaduct, Vierendeel bridge, Vlotbrug, Weigh bridge, Zig-zag bridge

Individual bridges Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, Benjamin Franklin Bridge, Bronx-Whitestone Bridge, Brooklyn Bridge, Burlington Northern Railroad Bridge 5.1, Contoocook Railroad Bridge, Delaware Memorial Bridge, Forth Bridge, Golden Gate Bridge, Huey P. Long Bridge, Humber Bridge, Kintai Bridge, Lake Ponchartrain Causeway, Mackinac Bridge, Mike O'Callaghan - Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge, Millau Viaduct, New River Gorge Bridge, Pont de Normandie, Rion-Antirion Bridge, San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge (Eastern span replacement), San Mateo – Hayward Bridge, Stonecutters Bridge, Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, Tappan Zee Bridge (replacement), Throgs Neck Bridge, Triborough Bridge, Tsing Ma Bridge, Verrazano-Narrows Bridge (please expand)

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