2015 Grand Conceptor Award Winner
San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge New East Span, Oakland, CA
T.Y. Lin International/Moffatt & Nichol (Joint Venture)
The mammoth San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge New East Span is the world’s longest single-tower, self-anchored suspension bridge, and can withstand the most powerful earthquake that can be predicted in a 1,500-year period. The 2.2 mile structure includes a world-record total deck width of 258 feet, and a 525-foot tall tower comprised of four separate steel legs interconnected by shear link beams. The beams move independently and serve as giant shock absorbers during an earthquake to keep the tower shafts elastic and avoid major damage to the main bridge structure.
The longest portion of the East Span—the 1.2-mile twin-viaduct Skyway—consists of four massive frames connected by specially designed expansion joints which allow the frames to move and slide as much as several feet, to also prevent major damage to the bridge structure. The entire project also include a 4,229-foot-long connection from the Skyway to Interstate 80; and a 1,542-foot-long connection that links the span to Yerba Buena Island.
With its visually-striking design, the East Span is now an iconic and seismically-resilient landmark which ensures the safety of more than 300,000 vehicles each day.
Video Credit: American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC)