Norway's New 154-Feet-Long 'Step-Bridge' Is an Architectural Marvel
Bridges can be as basic as ropes and wood connecting two points; however, there is no limit to how complex they can be. Some awe-inspiring bridge designs have become symbols of modern architecture in our ever-growing cities and architect Carl-Viggo Hølmebakk's monumental step bridge above the Vøringsfossen Waterfall in Norway is most definitely a perfect candidate for that title.
Recently opened by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration (NPRA), the monumental bridge looms over the 535-foot Vøringsfossen waterfall inside the Hardangervidda, which is the largest national park in the Nordic region.
Architect Carl-Viggo Hølmebakk had been working on the project for over a decade, and according to CNN Travel, he wanted to "seamlessly fuse the natural and the man-made". The step bridge has a span of 47 meters (over 150 feet) and 99 steps, and admittedly, looks like a giant insect that is about to step over the rush of water with its dangly legs.
According to Designboom, the height difference between each point of the bridge is 16 meters (over 50 feet). The construction of the bridge began in 2015 and apparently, helicopters helped with construction due to the difficult terrain.
The bridge was made up of seven components and they were hoisted in place by a crane. The assembly took place on-site and the entire thing was built in steel. Solid rock bolts were drilled into the rocks to secure the bridge.
The bridge is only the tip of the iceberg though since the waterfall will eventually host an accessible footpath and cafe in the future.
The bridge is definitely not for the faint-hearted though, especially those who are scared of heights might want to stick to the drone images instead of actually visiting it. The 535-foot waterfall will surely make anyone dizzy and feel as if they're floating high above the valley.
The bridge's construction has been home to controversy though, with some openly campaigning against it. While some think that the bridge has become a monumental tourist attraction on its own, some think that it has spoiled the view, "abusing the nature".