Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Tsing Yi Bridge
Tsing Yi Bridge (青衣大橋) is the first bridge on Tsing Yi Island of Hong Kong. It stands on Rambler Channel connecting Tsing Yi Island and Tsing Chau of Kwai Chung. The bridge spans 610 metres (about 2000 feet) and is 26 metres (85 feet) high. It contributed significantly to the development of Tsing Yi Island, particularly in 1970s and 1980s.
The bridge was built by Tsing Yi Bridge Company Limited (青衣大橋有限公司), composed by six companies on the island, namely, China Light and Power, Hong Kong Cement (香港水泥), International Containers (國際標準貨箱), Mobil Oil (美孚石油), Gulf Oil (高富石油) and Standard Oil (標準石油). In 1970, they budgeted 18 million Hong Kong dollars to build the bridge, and Hong Kong Government 7.5 million to the road connection. The construction was by Gammon (Hong Kong).
Its final cost was 17 million Hong Kong dollars and was completed in February 1974. On 28 February, 1974, Sir Murray MacLehose, the Governor of Hong Kong, came to open the bridge. Upon completion, the bridge was given to Hong Kong Government and the Government built roads to link up various areas on the island.
There are two lanes on the bridge. Before the rebuilding, the bridge was two-way; afterwards, two lanes are outward bound, and the Tsing Yi Doubling Bridge serves inward traffic.
It is also known as Tsing Yi South Bridge (青衣南橋), or simply South Bridge (南橋), upon the completion of Tsing Yi North Bridge in 1987.
A stone was erected on the Tsing Chau end of the bridge in memory of the completion. The stone was moved to the Tsing Yi end to spare space for building the Tsing Yi Doubling Bridge.
The arms are made of pre-tensioned concrete. Their cross-section is of hollow boxes. There are some power cables and two oil pipes inside the boxes. Both sides of hollow boxes have water pipes for the Tsing Yi Island.
On the bridge, there are 7 metres (24 feet) width for vehicles with a 1.5 metre (5 foot) wide pedestrian walkway on each side.
Ships operating in nearby water and passing through collided with the bridge several times, and caused minor damages on the bridge. Protection islands are built on the channel to avoid furthur accidents. Warning signs have been erected reminding that only ships under 17 metres are allowed to sail through the channel. Ships are prohibited to stay and operate near the bridge.
Aging and reborn
Tsing Yi Bridge once was a sole connection of island to the rest of Hong Kong. As residential population grew, the bridge was out of the designated loading. The two lanes becomes the traffic bottleneck and serious traffic congestion evolved. Heavy overloading, with dramatic increase in heavy vehicle traffic, made the bridge age quickly and the gap edge bent downward. Though later Tsing Yi North Bridge was built that alleviated the congestion a bit, the safety of the bridge was still a major concern. Finally, a rescue plan was implemented. A new bridge, Tsing Yi Doubling Bridge , was built alongside to replace Tsing Yi Bridge temporary. Tsing Yi Bridge then closed for fixing. Some tensioned steel cables were laid inside the bridge to straighten the bridge. After the project completed, the bridge, together with a new brother, serves the island again.
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