September 26, 2010

The Millau Viaduct

Would you feel a little nervous about driving across this bridge?



There's something just not right about driving above the clouds.




The Millau Viaduct is part of the new E11 expressway connecting Paris and Barcelona and features the highest bridge piers ever constructed. The tallest is 240 metres (787 feet) high and the overall height is an impressive 336 metres (1100 feet), making this the highest bridge in the world. It's taller than the Eiffel Tower.

Interestingly, the Millau Viaduct is not straight. Why? It's because a straight road could induce a floating sensation as you drive across it. So, a slight curve remedies that feeling. The curve is 20km in range. Moreover, the road has a light incline of 3% to improve the visibility and reassure the driver. An amazing engineering feat!