The United States has over the years produced some of the best architects and engineers in the world. The brilliance of these engineers is reflected in the architectural marvels of the high-rises, highways, waterways, and, of course, suspension bridges that they have constructed/designed over the years. There are many splendid suspension bridges spread across the country. Here, we bring to you a list of the top ten suspension bridges in the United States by their longest spans, which means the length of the suspended roadways between the towers of the bridges.
Though it is a long drive down the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, but not a single moment would bore you. The suspension bridge runs from Staten Island to Brooklyn, boroughs in New York City, and its longest span measures 4,260 feet. Verrazano-Narrows Bridge offers views of the vast expanse of waters and the ships passing underneath it. Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was the longest bridge in the world when it was opened to the public in 1964, a title it firmly held for 17 years until it was surpassed by other bridges around the world. Nevertheless, Verrazano-Narrows Bridge still retains the top spot in the US.
Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge is a stupendous feat of engineering, no wonder it is an icon of San Francisco. It has also been declared by the American Society of Civil Engineers as one of the Wonders of the Modern World. Seen frequently on postcards and in television shows & movies, the Golden Gate Bridge attracts visitors from around the globe. Its longest span is 4,200 feet, which is around 1.7 miles. The Golden Gate Bridge connects San Francisco and Marin County in California.
The third longest bridge in the United States, the Mackinac Bridge connects Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. Connecting Mackinaw City on the south with St. Ignace on the north end, the bridge’s longest span is 3,800 feet. The bridge became accessible to the public on November 1st, 1957. A part of the Interstate 75, the bridge, which is fondly referred to as the Big Mac, sees daily traffic of 11,600 vehicles.
George Washington Bridge
Named after the first President of the United States, the George Washington Bridge’s longest span is 3,500 feet and it connects Fort Lee, New Jersey and Washington Heights in Manhattan, New York City. It is one of the busiest bridges in the world and caters to an estimated 103 million vehicles every year. The bridge offers drivers a glimpse of the waters of the Hudson River flowing underneath it. Construction on the bridge began in 1927 and it was formally opened to the public in 1931.
Tacoma Narrows Bridge
Tacoma Narrows Bridge is a pair of bridges running parallel and stretching from the city of Tacoma to the Kitsap Peninsula in Washington. Its longest span is 2,799 ft. The current bridges were opened to the public in 1950, following the collapse of the original “Tacoma Narrows Bridge.” An increase in traffic led to the construction of a new bridge which opened in 2007. The 1950 bridge carries westbound traffic, while the 2007 bridge carries eastbound traffic. The original bridge, as well as the 1950 bridge, were then the third longest suspension bridges in the world. However, the following years saw many other bridges surpassing Tacoma Narrows.
New Carquinez Bridge
The bridge was originally built in 1927 to connect the cities of San Francisco and Sacramento, California, but increasing traffic problems led to the opening of a second bridge in 1958. Later seismic problems cropped up in the 1927 bridge forcing authorities to open a replacement bridge in 2003, the Al Zampa Memorial Bridge. The longest span of the New Carquinez Bridge is 2,388 feet, and the bridge runs from Crockett to Vallejo in California. While the 1958 span carries eastbound traffic, the Alfred Zampa Memorial Bridge carries westbound traffic.
San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge
San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge runs across from San Francisco to Oakland in California. It is a part of Interstate 80, and its longest span measures around 2,310 feet. Construction of the bridge started in 1933 and it was opened to the public on November 12, 1936.
The Bridge opened to the public in 1939 and connects the boroughs of Queens and Bronx in New York City. The longest span of the bridge measures around 2,300 feet and it caters to around 124,337 vehicles daily. Also known as Whitestone Bridge, it was designed by a Swiss-American structural engineer, Othmar Ammann.
Delaware Memorial Bridge
The Delaware Memorial Bridge runs between the states of Delaware and New Jersey and its longest span measured 2,152 feet. Dedicated to the soldiers who laid down their lives in the World War II, Persian Gulf War, the Vietnam War, and the Korean War, the eastbound bridge was opened in 1951 and the westbound in 1968. It caters to daily traffic of 90,000 vehicles.
Walt Whitman Bridge
The Walt Whitman Bridge began operation in 1957. It’s longest span measures 2,000 feet. A part of the Interstate 76, the bridge crosses the Delaware River and connects Philadelphia in Pennsylvania to Gloucester City in New Jersey. A busy bridge, it sees vehicular traffic of 120,000 every day.
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