Under the Bridge

In Uncategorized on July 27, 2013 at 5:53 pm

On this wonderful Baltic route, we have the pleasure of sailing under two really awesome bridges!!
The Great Belt Fixed Link (Danish: Storebæltsforbindelsen) runs between the Danish islands of Zealand and Funen. It consists of a road suspension bridge and railway tunnel between Zealand and the island Sprogø, and a box girder bridge between Sprogø and Funen. The suspension bridge, known as the East Bridge, has the world’s third longest main span (1.6 km), the longest outside of Asia. It was designed by the Danish architectural practice Dissing+Weitling.
The East Bridge was built between 1991 and 1998. The East Bridge (Østbroen) is a suspension bridge between Halsskov and Sprogø. It is 6,790 metres (22,277 ft) long with a free span of 1,624 metres (5,328 ft), making it the world’s third-longest suspension bridge span, surpassed only by the Akashi Kaikyō Bridge and Xihoumen Bridge. The Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge was opened two months earlier. The East Bridge had been planned to be completed in time to be the longest bridge, but it was delayed. The vertical clearance for ships is 65 metres (213 ft), meaning the world’s largest cruise ship just fits under.
At 254 metres (833 ft) above sea level, the two pylons of the East Bridge are the highest points on solid structures in Denmark. The only things that are taller are some radio masts, such as Tommerup transmitter.
To keep the main cables tensioned, an anchorage structure on each side of the span is placed below the road deck. Nineteen concrete pillars (12 on the Zealand side, seven by Sprogø), 193 metres (633 ft) apart, carry the road deck outside the span. It’s such an amazing structure, and sailing under it is breathtaing every time. We usually stand on deck 4 forward (the crew only area) and watch. Every time, as we sail under the bridge, an audible gasp can be heard from the guests standing on decks 10 and 11, as the bottom of the bridge is so close to their heads!

The other really amazing bridge that we go under is the one that connects Sweden and Denmark, but more on that later!

So often there’s stories from the Guest Services desk that I want to share but I don’t know if I should put them out there, but this bridge prompted one of the best phone calls that I’ve ever had, so I just have to share it.

Me: Good Evening, Guest Services, Erica speaking, how may I assist you?
Gst: So we’re going under this bridge that connects two islands tonight, right?
Me: Yes sir
Gst: Ok so what side of the ship do I have to be on to see it?
Me: We’ll be sailing underneath it, so either side.
Gst: Are you sure?
Me: Um, yes.

And on that note, I will leave you with that story, and this photo!

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