Saturday, November 04, 2017

London MillenniuM Footbridge (MillenniuM Bridge)

London The Unfinished City
Wobbly Bridge? Not anymore!

Of the nearly twenty pedestrian footbridges, across the River Thames, this is, quite possibly, my favourite. Spanning the river from St Paul's Cathedral, in the north, to the Tate Modern, in the south, the views that can be seen from its deck are incredible. When looking north, from Bankside, you get a clear view of St Paul's Cathedral, framed by the bridge supports.

Unfortunately, I never got to cross it on its opening day, nor the following two days, when it began to sway and wobble.

Brief History

Construction began in 1998, with the bridge opening in June 2000. However, it was closed just hours after opening, when, due to an effect called synchronous lateral excitation, it began to sway and wobble. It opened for another two days, for a limited time, before being closed while engineers worked on the problem.

Beginning in May 2001, engineers fitted 37 fluid-viscous dampers and 52 tuned mass dampers, which countered the effects of the oscillations, with works completed in January 2002. 

The London MillenniuM Footbridge finally reopened on February 22, 2002.

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