Arch Bridge And Hoover Dam
Photograph - Photo
The Mike O'Callaghan�Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge is an arch bridge in the United States that spans the Colorado River between the states of Arizona and Nevada. The bridge is located within the Lake Mead National Recreation Area approximately 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Las Vegas, Nevada, and carries U.S. Route 93 over the Colorado River. Opened in 2010, it was the key component of the Hoover Dam Bypass project, which rerouted US 93 from its previous routing along the top of Hoover Dam and removed several hairpin turns and blind curves from the route. It is jointly named for Mike O'Callaghan, Governor of Nevada from 1971�1979, and Pat Tillman, a football player who left his football career with the Arizona Cardinals to enlist in the United States Army and was later killed in Afghanistan.
As early as the 1960s, officials identified the US 93 route over Hoover Dam to be dangerous and inadequate for projected traffic volumes. From 1998�2001, officials from Arizona, Nevada, and several federal government agencies collaborated to determine the best routing for an alternative river crossing. In March 2001, the Federal Highway Administration selected the route, which crosses the Colorado River approximately 1,500 feet (460 m) downstream of Hoover Dam. Construction of the bridge approaches began in 2003, and construction of the bridge itself began in February 2005. The bridge was completed in 2010 and the entire bypass route opened to vehicle traffic on October 19, 2010.
The bridge was the first concrete-steel composite arch bridge built in the United States, and it incorporates the widest concrete arch in the Western Hemisphere. At 840 feet (260 m) above the Colorado River, it is the second-highest bridge in the United States, following the Royal Gorge Bridge. The Hoover Dam Bypass project was completed within budget at a cost of $240 million; the bridge portion cost $114 million.
The graceful, concrete arch is designed to support the bridge. Its curved shape spans the gap of Black Canyon. The bridge connects Arizona and Nevada, and creates a faster route across the river. It's open to traffic, and has a sidewalk as part of the pedestrian and visitor amenities, which include a parking lot, trail, and interpretive plaza.
May 16th, 2013
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