Landmark bridge on Yangtze River counts down to completion
The Yangtze River, the world's third longest waterway, is expecting a new landmark as construction counts down toward completion of the widest bridge on the river.
With a length of 7,548 meters and a width of 48 meters, the Qingshan Yangtze River Road Bridge in Wuhan, capital of central China's Hubei Province, began paving asphalt on Monday.
Upon completion, it will become the world's longest cable-stayed bridge with a floating system, said China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group Co., Ltd (MBEC), the project's main constructor.
The main steel structure of the 10-lane dual-way bridge has no lower beams, so it can "swing" between the giant supporting beams on the sides to offset the impact of strong winds and earthquakes, according to MBEC.
The bridge is expected to open next year and significantly improve the road network and logistics in Wuhan, an important transportation hub in central China.
The latest landmark is located only 20 km downstream of the Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge, which was built 62 years ago as the first major bridge across the country's busiest waterway.
Liu Ziming, board chairman of MBEC, said China has made big progress in the infrastructure sector since the time when the Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge was built.
"Back then, construction (of the Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge) needed the support of the whole country. Now our company alone can build more than 120 bridges at the same time," said Liu.