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Bridges in the Douro estuary

Bridges in the Douro estuary
D. Maria Pia Bridge Designed by the engineer, Gustave Eiffel, this bi-articulated arched railway bridge, measuring 352.875m long and 61 m high, was inaugurated in 1877 by the Royal family. It operated until 1991, on which date the railway service was transferred to the São João Bridge.

Luís I Bridge A 2-level road and pedestrian bridge, with a span of 172m and 44,6m spire was built at the end of the 19th century, by the Belgian company, Willebroeck, of Brussels, designed by the engineer, Teóphile Seyrig, a former collaborator of Eiffel.

Arrábida Bridge Designed by Professor Edgar Cardoso, this bridge once held the world record as the longest reinforced concrete arched bridge. The spire of the arch is 52m and the bridge has a total height of 70m above the average level of the waters. Construction of the bridge began in May 1957 and it was inaugurated on June 22, 1963.

São João Bridge Designed by Professor Edgar Cardoso, this bridge was inaugurated in 1991 on St John's day. The central pillar measures 250 m and its lateral pillars measure 125 m, supported by two pillars with foundations in the river next to the river banks.

Freixo Bridge Located upstream from the other bridges, this road bridge was designed by Professor António Reis. It is constituted by two twin beams across its length. The bridge has eight spans. The middle span measures 150 m, and has spans of 115 m either side, followed by shorter spans.

Infante Bridge Designed by the engineer, Adão da Fonseca, the Infante D. Henrique Bridge, is unique in the world. It substituted the upper level of the Luís I Bridge, which will now be used for the metro connection between Oporto and Vila Nova de Gaia. With a total length or 371 m and an arch with a span of 280 m, the Infante Bridge has two lanes in each direction, that connect the zone of Fontaínhas with Serra do Pilar. Construction of the bridge began in 1999, and was concluded in October 2002, and inaugurated in March 2003.


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