As many of you already know, I’m a fanatic of architecture styles and structures. Shapes, patterns, texture, and lines of buildings fascinate me. When I drive through Panama City, I’m always with my eyes wide open to detect a building with interesting lines. You have seen some of these buildings here.
A structure that means a lot to me in Panama City is the Bridge of the Americas. Its complex superstructure is a wonderful sight to view as well as the height of the bridge.
This steel truss arch bridge spans over the Pacific entrance of the Panama canal. The bridge was designed and constructed by John F. Beasly & Company in 1962 and was the only permanent link between the two continents until the opening of the Centennial Bridge in 2004.
The bridges main span is 1,129 feet long and the deck is 200 feet over the water level from its highest point. The 33 feet wide deck carries four road lanes and two pedestrian lanes, one on each side.
When opened in the early sixties, the Pan-American Highway crossing the bridge had an average daily traffic of about 9,500 vehicles. By 2004 the traffic had increased to 35,000 vehicles per day. This situation led eventually to the construction of the Centennial Bridge in 2004.
Below are three photographs of the mighty bridge taken about 6:30 a.m. (-5 GMT). Each photograph was shot at intervals of about five minutes. I was experimenting with the changing light of the morning and noticing the details on the sand in the foreground. It’s not a secret how important light is to a photographer.
Here we go.
From my perspective, these photographs are similar to textbook pictures used by architecture students to analyze the different parts and designs of a steel truss arch bridge. If you’re a bridge fan, I’m sure you’ll appreciate the clear design of this spectacular superstructure. Good Day.