|July 2008 (31.4223°N, 104.7533°E) Mianyang Airport Viaduct|
For my last bridge photo from Sichuan, China I picked this 'U' shaped ramp that allows vehicles to drop off and pick up people at the Mianyang Airport. However, it is such an irregular design, with columns that increase in diameter, or are half the height of adjacent columns, that its great distance from the earthquake is the only reason more damage didn’t occur. The center part of the ‘U’ is a double deck bridge that allows vehicles access to both airport levels. A short, stiff column had severe shear cracks that exposed the aggregate and reinforcement. Also, there was spalling of the superstructure concrete at the expansion joint at the next column. The Airport Viaduct remained closed for more than two months after the earthquake.
I'm flying to Japan today to attend a symposium on last year's earthquake and tsunami. Hopefully, I'll have time to add some more Tokyo river bridges to my blog. If I'm too busy (or too exhausted) I'll put them in after I return.
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