Archive for bridge

World’s highest and longest glass-bottomed bridge opened in China recently with the level of hype I never expected.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 5, 2015 by vincentloy

I guessed most of you should have known this by now; China had recently opened the world’s highest and longest glass-bottomed bridge. It is also China’s first bridge of its kind. Videos of people ‘bravely’ crossing and introducing that particular bridge are widely circulated through social networking sites and reported in most news articles recently till the point that almost everyone is talking about it now. Experiences of the first pack of the bridge’s visitors; some closed their eyes while crossing due to the fear of height. Some felt dizzy straight away. Some were afraid but successfully crossed through the entire bridge to prove his/her guts.

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If you still don’t know anything of this bridge, you must be living in the jungle. For me, it is nothing more than a glass bridge. It is interesting but I’m surprised of the level of hype it obtained now till the point that I have to share it in my blog here. I will only check out the bridge if I’m happened to be passing by or visiting the national park where it is located. If not, I would not purposely go there just to see the bridge. Anyway, here you go for a bit of information regarding this bridge; When translated directly to English, the bridge is called Brave Men’s Bridge. It is a glass walkway of 300 metres long and is suspended 180 meters above a sheer drop in Shiniuzhai National Geological Park, China’s central Hunan Province.

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Each of the glass panes is 24 millimeters thick and is believed to be 25 times stronger than normal glass. One worker who built the bridge assured that the bridge will stand firm even if tourists are jumping on it. “The steel frame used to support and encase the glass bridge is also very strong and densely built, so even if a glass is broken, travelers won’t fall through.”, he added. The bridge was originally a wooden bridge before the park experimented by replacing a small section with glass in 2014. It decided to increase the thrill by revamping the whole overpass earlier this year, making it China’s first all-glass suspension bridge.

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Hunan is due to open another glass bridge later this year in the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon area, about 300 kilometers (186 miles) northwest of Shiniuzhai. When completed, the Zhangjiajie structure will be the world’s highest and longest glass bridge — 430 meters long and 300 meters high. Well, it appears that China is not only stretching their limits in building supertall skyscrapers (their recent trend) but also in constructing terrifying and challenging bridges like this one. This glass-bottomed bridge that allows people to ‘enjoy’ views directly below their feet is already drawing huge crowds due to its viral promotion on the internet as well as coinciding with the Golden Week of China, a week-long of holiday for China’s National Day celebration currently. This is the time when millions of China nationals will go for a vacation both inside or outside of country.

Talking about tourists from China. I’m not being discriminating but I believe most of you think the same. They have very bad moral and most of them don’t behave well. I have been a traveler quite frequently and I always bumped into usually large group of tourists from mainland China either in their country or even in other countries. Well, most of them are now wealthy and can go travelling anywhere they like. But their values of conduct are extremely low. Their discipline are awful. Whenever I encountered them, I find them really irritating, annoying, noisy, and showing disrespect to the tourist places. Well, there have been many articles showing their bad attitudes (not queuing, peeing on the public, harassing human-shaped sculptures or statues, vandalizing buildings or monuments, spitting wherever they like, etc) shared out and I couldn’t agree more. They don’t feel embarrassed by their own actions and that is what got me surprised. Something must be very wrong to their moral education in the past when they were young. Totally terrible…I’m not targeting all the Chinese nationals…but most of them!

I guess after this holiday week, the glass bridge would be extremely dirty straight away with multiple stains (of spits everywhere maybe…) or maybe even declared unsafe soon since there must be ‘thousands’ of them rushing to cross the bridge and it simply couldn’t hold the huge weight anymore. Who knows…

(Images and some information in this post are from this source: http://edition.cnn.com/2015/09/27/travel/china-glass-bridge-shiniuzhai/)

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Penang Second Bridge, latest Malaysia’s icon opened!

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 2, 2014 by vincentloy

After years of construction, the Penang Second Bridge was successfully completed not long ago despite facing problems like delays, cost-cutting that leads to design revision and also the collapse of an interchange to the bridge last year. And the great news to the country is that it had been also officially launched by the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on yesterday’s night with carnival-like celebrations and fireworks display which were also witnessed by Penang Chief Minister, Lim Guan Eng and over 10 000 audiences.

Today, the bridge, now named as Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah Bridge after the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is officially opened to the public. The 24-km long link will serve as the second crossing to the Penang Island, popularly known as the Pearl of the Orient. 16.9km of the bridge is above water. This bridge, known as the longest in the country and also in South East Asia region will helped significantly to reduce traffic over at the first 13.5-km long Penang Bridge which was completed back in 1985 (almost 30 years ago).

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JAMBATAN KEDUA PULAU PINANG

Originally, the design of this latest Penang Second Bridge was to be something different and unique but was later revised to resemble the look of the first bridge (also cable-stayed) that is much simpler, hence cost-saving. I am also curious why the path is so curvy (you can see it in the image above). An S-shaped bridge. Nevertheless, the current finished Penang Second Bridge still looks magnificent. Construction of the bridge, linking Batu Kawan on the mainland and Batu Maung on Penang Island, began in November 2008 and was finally completed after over 5 years.  The bridge has been built with a large loan from China to continue and maintain the economic relationship between the country and Malaysia.

I believed many Malaysians, particularly Penangites are eager to drive through this newly-opened bridge for the first time since previously, their only option of crossing over to the island besides than taking ferry is to take the one and only Penang (first) Bridge which is usually congested. For those who are not fancy or excited of this new bridge would end up saying; ‘It is just another bridge! Nothing ground-breaking.’ I had to somehow agree to that statement too. Anyway, this Penang Second Bridge would still no doubt be the latest addition to a long list of national icons.

(Information and images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Insight: Shard London Bridge Tower

Posted in Architectural Territory with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 24, 2012 by vincentloy

This building would be completed just in time in conjunction with the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games to be held in July this year. According to the schedule, the building is now undergoing finishing work on the top portion beyond the roof level and has already topped out to its final height. The building is estimated to be completed by next month, and to be opened to the public on June, a month before all eyes are set on London for the 30th Olympic Games.

This building is associated with many nicknames; London Bridge Tower, Shard of Glass, 32 London Bridge, and The Shard. Well, I like the last one, it is cool calling the building simply ‘The Shard’. The reason why the building is called ‘London Bridge’ as well because it is situated right next to the London Bridge station. The building has 95 floors, of which 72 of them are habitable while the remaining 23 floors above are for narrow plant floors. The building overall reaches the height of 310 metres, making it the tallest building in Europe and the whole European Union (EU). Well, it is only as tall as my country’s Telekom Tower which is the third tallest in my country. The images below show how ‘The Shard’ would appears at different times of a day in renderings. (Images taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Shard_London_Bridge_night_and_day.jpg)

The architect behind the design is Renzo Piano, a famous Italian architect best known for designing Paris’ Pompidou Centre in collaboration with Britain’s Richard Rogers. Renzo Piano first started out by sketching an iceberg-like tall structure emerging from the River Thames, and he said his inspiration to that is from the railway lines next to the site, the London spires depicted by the Venetian painter Canaletto, and the masts of bygone sailing ships. So, that started out the development in his design which is going to be very futuristic and reflective when going on this design direction. Image below shows the rendering of the building’s concourse level. This would turns to reality very soon. (Image from http://www.origindesignstudio.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/The-Shard-Concourse-Mackenzie-London.jpg.)

Renzo Piano compared his design to “a shard of glass”. He considered the slender, spire-like form of the tower a positive addition to the London skyline, believing that its presence would be far more delicate than opponents of the project alleged. He proposed a sophisticated use of glazing, with expressive façades of angled glass panes intended to reflect sunlight and the sky above, so that the appearance of the building will change according to the weather and seasons. So, the use of glazing turns out to be very essential for his design. The completed Shard will contain premium office space, a hotel, luxury residences, retail space, restaurants, a 15-storey public viewing gallery, a luxurious spa and an open-air observation deck at the highest floor. The observation deck would be the highest in United Kingdom.

It will be the most prominent landmark and would becomes a new icon to the city of London. Standing proud over the neighbouring buildings, ‘The Shard’ is not only a tall building but also an exceptional design masterpiece of the highest architectural quality. It is a lovely futuristic-looking building, and London seriously needs this kind of tall landmark not only to further enhance the city’s picturesque setting and skyline but also as a sign to welcome or greet people around the world to the city for the upcoming London 2012 Olympic Games. And so, they built it! Amazing structure. The building blends in perfectly with the sky as well, as though the structure is transparent. Hmm…I like the ‘piercing’ top of the tower too, but it would be better if the topping ends much sharper and pointed towards the sky.

(The other images in this post not referenced right before or after are all from the forum thread of this building in skyscraperpage.com…click on each of the images for larger version)

Going through the Bukit Bintang – KLCC Pedestrian Walkway the first time…

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 20, 2012 by vincentloy

After a round of two movies straight and a dinner in Pavilion KL just now, I decided to take a walk to KLCC Park by using the newly-constructed air-conditioned pedestrian bridge which spans over 1 kilometre long. I heard about it from the news of its opening not long ago by the Prime Minister under the urban development plans of the city of Kuala Lumpur. So, that must be a good project to gain more support to the current government.

The bridge is still in a very good condition, generally because it is still new. The floor is squeaky clean, the air-conditioners are working, and all the lightings are sufficient. It’s comfortable walking in the bridge, but in the same time, I’m feeling tired too since it’s quite a lengthy walk from Pavilion to KLCC which stops at KLCC Convention Centre. There are quite a number of people using the bridge, which is proven to be beneficial to the people of the city, helping them to avoid the stuffy outdoor environment and the hectic noisy traffic on roads.

It’s also good to have a number of security personnels on duty along the bridge, to prevent any robbery or to disallow beggars to loiter  along the comfy walkway. They can be useful for asking directions too, since the long walkway bridge is not in one straight route but is also split out into few routes in each end. There are also very few advertisement boards placed along the bridge, as not to block view to the outside which is also limited somehow by the exterior structural framing of the bridge itself. Before I reach the end where KLCC is, I told my friend that there must be a ‘Satu Malaysia’ sign at the end of route to remind us support the current government that provided us with such facility. But that little bit of good stuff still won’t change my final perception after all.

Overall, it’s a great and a useful addition to the city, but the budget allocated for this project is extremely high and unreasonable for reasons we all know silently. Let’s just hope that this bridge is maintained well for a long term usage to the people of the city which would definitely facilitates their movement while providing a comfy indoor walking environment. It would be better if they provide travelator (automatic moving walkway) in the bridge as well, so the users don’t need to walk that long….

(The pictures from this post are from this source: http://forum.lowyat.net/topic/2204808/all)

A quick walk at night around Putrajaya Steel Mosque, the other beautiful side of the city!

Posted in Architectural Territory with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 29, 2011 by vincentloy

Many Malaysians recognize Putrajaya, the administrative city of Malaysia from its few important buildings like the Perdana Putra (Prime Minister’s Office), Putra Mosque as well as the Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) on the other end of the 2km-long axis. However, beginning from 2010, another iconic landmark is added to the skyline of Putrajaya, which is the Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin Mosque, or popularly known as the Steel Mosque.

The plan for yesterday’s night before watching the movie ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides’ (the movie review is on the previous post) at Alamanda Putrajaya was to take some beautiful photographs of the mosque which can be seen along the roads. At the night, Putrajaya does not look like what it is in normal days with many canopies set up and road blocks for the One Million Youth Gathering which many events were held. There are quite a number of people surrounding the area. Hence, the atmosphere is not quiet like in usual days along the boulevard, and it actually destroys my mood of being there in feeling the awesomeness of the architecture.

I can’t locate my camera and so, I have to use my phone to take some images. Photos from my 8.1 megapixels phone’s camera are also not very bad in quality. As a Chinese, being there in Putrajaya makes you to feel like you are a foreigner, in a place only with Malays while Chinese are more concentrated in Bukit Bintang area for usual Saturday’s night. So, it is a bit weird. It is so hard to find another Chinese in the area. I managed to take some pictures of the exterior of the mosque including a large path from the front of the Palace of Justice to the iconic new mosque. It is seen as a journey walking from the beginning to the end which reaches the mosque. Too bad, it is not permitted to enter the mosque.

I do not know much on the architecture of the mosque except recognizing the arches and the materials used in the construction as well as the geometrical-patterned wall framing which captures my attention from its reflection of shadow to the outside wall due to strong lighting from interior.

The exterior lighting of the structure is captivating too. I do see also unnecessary runs of structures over the arches in the mosque, which I don’t understand why it is applied. Before it’s time to leave, I had the opportunity to drop by under the striking bridge, called as Seri Wawasan Bridge, a futuristic-looking cable-stayed bridge with a sail ship appearance. It’s time to take some photos again, this time not only of the bridge but also of part of the night skyline of the city.

Many would go take pictures of the Putra Mosque and the Prime Minister’s Office once they are in Putrajaya…not for me, because I find this other part of the city (the steel mosque area in the middle of the boulevard) to be more interesting in terms of architecture. Do you notice that there is a strong sense of symmetry which suggested formality on the architecture in Putrajaya as what you can see from even these few pictures I taken and posted here?

Man Made Marvels: Songdo City.

Posted in Architectural Territory with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 31, 2009 by vincentloy

Long time in this blog, I did not write any post on architecture, and now it is a right time for it…Why? Because just now I have just checked on a TV programme called Man Made Marvels: Songdo City in National Geographic Channels…

  

I love National Geographic…sometimes I can learn a lot of things related to architecture, building technology, engineering, and history. Songdo City is a new (constructing) city in Incheon region of South Korea. The whole project needs around US 35 billion dollar and sits on the 1500 acres of reclaimed land. The master plan is designed by Kohn Pederson Fox.

It is the world largest private construction project and is scheduled for completion by year 2014, ten years after construction began. The workers only had ten years to build the whole city from flat ground to green city of skyscrapers and high quality living.

There are three man made marvels listed in the project, first of all the Incheon International Airport. It is among the world best and greatest airport. It is very large and built on a man made island in the middle of sea.

Next, is the new Songdo International Convention Center. The most interesting part of it is it’s engineering breakthrough. The large curved roof that resembles the traditional roof form of Korean architecture had no column supporting it from below. The load has to be transferred to the two ends of the each roof joined together and then transferred to the 30m deep foundation. The structure will be the city center and is designed by famous architectural firm; Kohn Pederson Fox.

Next, is the new Incheon Bridge. This 12km bridge (8m above water) will be linking the airport directly to Songdo City. It will be the world fifth longest cable-stayed bridge when completed. The bridge pylon stands at a staggering height of 238m. This bridge undergoes various weather constraints like strong winds, low tides, strong mist, heavy rain, etc.

There will be a Central Park in the city, similar to the Central Park in New York City. The park will symbolize the high quality of living of residents in the green city. Artificial lake, river, gardens, pavilions, gazebos, etc are all available in the park.

There will be few soaring skyscrapers around the city center, residential and office towers above 60 floors high. Northeast Asia Trade Tower is now topped out at 70 floors, with a height of 305m, the tallest building in South Korea. It is designed by KPF too; a square plan with a triangular top for helicopter landing pad. Every buildings in the city ( around 500 to 600 ) will be LEED (Leadership in Engineering Environmental Design) certified, marking the status of a green city.

Wow..I’m great, I can remember so many information I have watched just now.

Detail of Earth Hour 2009 in Malaysia…

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2009 by vincentloy

Earth Hour 2009 is just around the corner..it will be on this Saturday, 28th of March 2009…from 8.30pm to 9.30pm when cities from around the world will switch off their lights in an hour…

the global event first started in year 2007  in one city, Sydney, Australia. In year 2008, there are 400 cities in 35 countries participating the event, turning it into a global and international event…

In year 2009, it will be far more greater than the previous ones…there will be over 2800 cities from 82 countries from all around the world participating and giving their full support to the event…exceeding the target of 1000 cities (exceeded of over double, almost triple, great result)

For Malaysia, there will be few cities that will switch off their lights, mainly Kuala Lumpur (capital city), Penang Island, Putrajaya (administrative city), Malacca and others…

Famous landmarks in Malaysia will be in the dark on that night in an hour such as Petronas Twin Towers (one of seven wonders of Asia, world tallest twin buildings), Kuala Lumpur Tower (world fifth tallest telecommunication tower), Independence Square, National Monument, Prime Minister Office, Penang Bridge, Sunway region, and many others..

Other famous landmarks from all around the world to be in dark will be Empire State Building, Great Pyramids of Giza, Golden Gate Bridge, Acropolis, Beijing National Stadium (Bird Nest Stadium) and many others…

Major cities participating are New York, London, Beijing, Hong Kong, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Sydney, Bangkok, Jakarta, Mumbai, Delhi, Paris, Cape Town, Tokyo, Toronto, Chicago, Rio de Janeiro, Mexico, Las Vegas, Athens, Shanghai, Singapore, Los Angeles, Dubai, and many others…

Support the event if u wished too by switching off the unnecessary lights at your home on 28th of March 2009, from 8.30pm to 9.30pm, local time.

Then, check out how Kuala Lumpur turns into darkness on that night..honestly, Kuala Lumpur does not have many lights turned on at night everyday, anyway, there is something unusual to see also as the lighted up Petronas Twin Towers and KL Tower will switch off their extreme lights too…

What I am desperate is to see how Hong Kong turned off all its beautiful lights in its city skyline at night…it is the best skyline city in the world..the lights there are amazing, colourful and changing neon lightings and lasers really amazed everyone…on that night, we won’t be seeing this as the city goes to darkness and the Symphony of Light show in the city everyday will be cancelled specially for the Earth Hour.

[UPDATED] – 26/03/2009

Rehearsal had been held on the Beijing National Stadium (Bird Nest Stadium) on its light-switching pattern. Check out the video on the official webaite, www.earthhour.org. For checking into Earth Hour Malaysia, go to www.earthhour.org/malaysia.

Support Earth Hour! Eventhough it is just for an hour which sounds not influencing, but if that one hour, everybody is doing the same, switching off lights, then there will be a really great impact! Think…