London’s Tower Bridge has just joined the Grand Canyon, Willis Tower, and the Eifel Tower by opening a glass walkway 120 feet above the bridge deck. The walkway is the first of two walkways to open over the bridge that will allow visitors to experience vertigo inducing views of the Thames River. The other walkway, over the east side of the bridge, will be opened on December 1.
Earthquake prediction and warning is an evolving technology, which is going to significantly contribute to civil and property protection. The possibility to have an actual early warning earthquake system is now closer to reality, thanks to a collaboration between USGS and a small start up company in the Golden State.
Developers Wright Runstand & Company released drawings yesterday of a new building that will be built in Rainier Square in Seattle, Washington. The 58-story tower will include residential, office, restaurant, and retail space. The developers hope to break ground later next year and complete the tower by 2017. Once completed, the tower will become Seattle’s second tallest skyscraper.
According to the latest projections, the new Bay Bridge eastern span will be completed $35 million over budget. Caltrans is shifting funds from other bride projects from around the state to make up the deficit. The new Bay Bridge eastern span connecting San Francisco and Oakland, California opened in September of last year. Caltrans has been optimistic throughout the duration of the project that the completed bridge would cost less than the $6.4 billion price tag. That figure includes $900 million for cost over runs and contingencies. However, it is estimated that there is still $110 million of unfinished work left to complete the eastern span and Caltrans expects their original estimate of $100 million to tear down the old span to be lower than the actual cost. Taking into account the remaining work that needs to be done as well as cost overruns, Caltrans expects to have a $35 million deficit when the bridge is completed.
The world’s first peak-to-peak suspension bridge opened in Switzerland yesterday. The bridge’s 351-foot span is only 31 inches wide and it is located 9,800 feet above sea level. Anyone brave enough to cross the Peak Walk at Glacier 3000 will take in incredible views of the Swiss Alps including 24 peaks including Mont Blanc and Matterhorn. The ski resort opened this past weekend and the resort’s owners plan to keep the Peak Walk at Glacier 3000 open year round, weather permitting. And the best news of all is it is free for everyone.
The creators of the Bay Bridge’s “Bay Lights” have until the end of the year to raise $4 million to keep their changing light display from coming to an end. The Bay Lights have been around since March of 2013 and are operating on a two-year permit. The system was privately funded and cost $8 million to install. They are made up of 25,000 LED lights that are attached to 300 cables on one side of the bridge’s western span. Artist Leo Villareal programmed the lights to constantly change patterns from dusk until dawn each night.
The new Tilikum Crossing Bridge in Portland, Oregon began testing its new ambient lighting system last Thursday and Friday. Morgan Barnard, Douglass Hollis, and Anna Valentina Murch designed the LED light system to change colors according to the data streamed from the U.S. Geological Service river monitor near the Tilikum Crossing Bridge. Those living in the area or using the bridge will not only see the light system change colors throughout the day, but they will also witness large changes in color throughout the course of the year as the time of year affects the river’s speed, temperature, and height.