Published On: Sat, Mar 16th, 2024

The £1 billion bridge that’s one of the world’s biggest connecting two major islands | Travel News | Travel

Built on a crossing between central and Chek Lap Kok Airport, the Tsing Ma Bridge is always named among the world’s most expensive bridges. The famous bridge with a length of 0.85 miles (1.37 km) has been built for £1 billion ($1.35 billion).

The bridge is named after two islands at each end – Tsing Yi and Ma Wan. The construction of the Tsing Ma Bridge was completed in 1997, making it the world’s second-longest bridge at that time.

However, it now ranks just within the top ten longest bridges in the world in terms of length. The former British Prime Minister inaugurated the 41m-wide bridge.

Before the crossing was available, people could only reach Lantau Island by ferry but with the introduction of the bridge, it’s possible to cross the channel quickly by road or rail.

The project connected Hong Kong’s main urban area to the city-state’s new airport at Chek Lap Kok. This road and rail connection helps facilitate travel to one of Southeast Asia’s busiest hubs for both business and tourism.

The bridge has two decks and carries road and rail traffic. The top level of the bridge has six lanes for road traffic, with three lanes in each direction. 

Below, there are two railway lines and two covered lanes for vehicles. These lanes are primarily utilised for maintenance purposes.

The bridge is kept upright by cables anchored in large concrete structures on either side of the crossing. Engineers used 200,000 tonnes of concrete for the Tsing Yi anchorage and 250,000 tonnes for the Ma Wan side.

Tourists who have been on the magnificent bridge have termed it an “engineering marvel”.

One user wrote on TripAdvisor: “The suspension bridge that connects the international airport and the main parts of Hong Kong. While it may not be obvious to commuters, the bridge is an engineering marvel, connecting island to island.”

A second user said: “Always interested in architecture and structures during our travels. This bridge is named after Tsing Yi and Ma Wan islands and provides efficient connection between Lantau and all points Kowloon. 

“Double decked with road vehicles on the upper and a train service on the lower. It has a span of 1,377m between the 206m high towers, making it the world’s largest for carrying both vehicular and rail traffic. Impressive.”

A third user said: “The Tsing Ma Bridge is the world’s longest suspension bridge that includes both road and rail traffic. The main span is 1.47 km in length while its height is 206 metres. It connects Tsing Yi and Ma Wan islands as part of a greater expanse of bridges and roads that links Lantau Island to the rest of Hong Kong. The name Tsing Ma comes from the two small islands mentioned above.

“The Tsing Ma Bridge opened to the public in 1997 and was considered an engineering marvel in its day. It is an impressive-looking structure as you approach and take the bridge, it may look even better at night when the bridge is lit up with lights.

“Your best chance to encounter and experience the Tsing Ma Bridge is by way of public bus or taxi transportation between the city and Hong Kong International Airport or Disneyland which are both on Lantau Island.

“If you have a particular interest in viewpoints where you can see the bridge, you may want to consider visiting the Lantau Link Viewing Platform on Tsing Yi Island. From this elevated platform area, the bridge can be viewed very well when sky conditions are favourable. There is also a Visitor Centre with displays related to the bridge as well.”

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