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Monday, 06 May 2019 01:00cat

Opening of the longest pedestrian bridge in North America

Written by  TheStructuralEngineer.info
Gatlinburg SkyBridge at Skylift Park Gatlinburg SkyBridge at Skylift Park

A new suspension bridge in Tennessee, U.S., will become the longest pedestrian bridge in North America.

The Gatlinburg SkyBridge will be about 215 meters long and rise at a 45-meter height. It is scheduled to open on May, 17, 2019. The bridge stretches across a valley in the Great Smoky Mountain.

The structure belongs to the Skylift Park, an attraction which features a chairlift that transports people from Gatlinburg to the top of Crockett Mountain. Passengers will be able to walk across the bridge enjoying the magnificent view of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. It is crucial to point out that even if the Gatlinburg SkyLift is currently operating, people couldn't get off the lift and enjoy the landscape since the wildfires in November 2016.

"Guests will be able to walk across at their own pace, taking in the views and enjoying the spectacular setting before walking back when they're ready. The SkyBridge is an absolutely spectacular but easily attainable experience you'll remember for a lifetime — especially as you cross the glass-floor panels in the middle of the span." Gatlinburg SkyLift Park posted on its Facebook page.

The assumption that the structure is the longest pedestrian bridge in North America is doubted by a report which claims that a bridge on Kelowna Mountain in British Columbia, Canada, is over 265 meters. However, Julie Ard, the senior vice president of Corporate Communications and Programs for Boyne Resorts that is responsible for the construction of the bridge and the operation of the Skylift, stated that the dispute is caused by a difference in the techniques of measuring each bridge's length.

"The stated length of 'over 800 feet long' is the distance between the points at which the bridge's anchoring cables enter the ground. The Gatlinburg SkyBridge is believed to be the longest of its kind in North America. Its length of 680 feet is a measurement of the suspended walking surface visitors can experience versus a measurement of the overall components of the bridge," Mr. Ard said.

Currently, the longest pedestrian bridge in the world which spans over 530 meters is Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge and is located in Switzerland.

Sources: USAtoday.comCnn.com

Click the following video to take a walk on the bridge.

 

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A Walk on SkyBridge

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