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Viaduc de Millau

architecture

The viaduct consists of eight spans, supported by seven concrete pillars. The middle pieces are spanning 342 meters, the final spans 204 meters. The bridge is 270 meters above the Tarn River. The length is 2460 meters. Seven huge bridge piers are built, the highest of which reaches 343 meters into the air, slightly higher than the Eiffel Tower. This is the highest bridge pier in the world. The bridge deck is 32 meters wide and has two lanes in both directions and an emergency lane.

The viaduct is the largest vehicle bridge in the world. The foundation began in 2001. On December 9, 2003, a few weeks earlier than planned, the foundations and pillars were ready. The road surface is made of metal, so this part of the viaduct looks transparent and not at all too dominating the landscape. The road weighs 36 000 tons, is 2460 meters long and 32 meters wide. The bridge parts were produced in factories and transported by road to Millau. Since the crossover is slightly curved, each item had to be unique.

In order to weld all parts of the road surface to each other, sites were set up on either side (south and north). Here all the welding work was carried out. In this way, the majority of the work was realized the ground, so that the risk of the work at a great height was avoided

The placement of the steel deck on its pillars was a technical feat: the road surface was slid from two sides towards the center of the bridge by means of a system of jacks. This was done at an average speed of seven meters per hour and had to be done very precisely and synchronously.

In a 15-month period, the two pieces were welded together and pushed together. On May 28, 2004, at 14:12 hours, the two sides of the road surface were above the Tarn welded together.

Driving from the north on the A75 to the bridge, after passage of the toll station, just before the bridge you can go to a special parking area (Aire) with an explanation of the construction of the bridge and a observation point with a unique look at the whole bridge.

The toll is € 9.40 (year 2015) per passage for a passenger car in high season.

Distance : Distance off Clapas 100 km
Travel Time 1h. 40 min.

Address:
Viaduc de Millau
12400 MILLAU
FRANCE