January 11, 2016

Struth! 300 metres straight down

Bridging Bungy Jump Records

IN his continuing search for the more weird and wondrous in this world, David Ellis says that a pedestrian bridge to open in early 2016 in China's Hunan Province will have a totally glass deck so that those brave enough to walk on it can peer beyond their feet down the stomach-churning 300m (984ft) of emptiness to the valley floor below.

Spanning the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon, the new 380m long bridge (1,247ft) was designed by Israeli architect Haim Dotan and will be the longest and highest glass-deck bridge in the world. But so as not to impose too severely on the surrounding landscape, architect Dotan designed it with a thin, super-reinforced steel framework that's painted white to be "as invisible as possible, a white bridge disappearing into the clouds."

Yet minimal as it may look, the new bridge will be able to carry 800 people at any one time on its glass deck, and withstand everything from earthquakes to high winds.

And for those not content to simply look bravely through the glass below their feet to the ground a terrifying 300m below (nearly 1000ft) as if they were standing in space, there are plans to give the bridge a Bungy Jump that will be nearly a third higher than the world's current record holder, the Macau Tower Jump at 233 metres (765ft.)



[] ARTIST'S impression of the world's longest and highest glass-bottom pedestrian bridge that will open early next year in China's Hunan Province. (Haim Dotan Architects)

[] DESIGNED to "be as invisible as possible, a white bridge disappearing into the clouds." (Haim Dotan Architects)

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