5 Historic & Record Breaking Wooden Bridges

Did you know that some of the oldest wooden pedestrian bridges date all the way back to the 13th century?  While some of the bridges have had sections renovated or restored for one reason or another, most of the bridges are still utilizing their original wood.  So, without further ado, down below we have gathered five of some of the most historic and record breaking bridges.

5. Holzbrücke Bad Säckingen

Holzbrücke Bad Säckingen Bridge

Holzbrücke Bad Säckingen, also known as Säckingerbrücke, was originally built in 1272.  This once road traffic bridge, now a pedestrian bridge, is known for two historic facts.  First, the bridge as it is now is not the same bridge as it was in 1272.  This is because the bridge was destroyed numerous times between 1570 and 1678.  Holzbrücke Bad Säckingen as it stands now was completed in 1700.  Secondly, this pedestrian bridge is known as the longest roofed wooden bridge in Europe.  

Total length: 668 ft (203.7 m)

Width: 16 ft (5 m)

No. of spans 9

4. Cornish-Windsor

Cornish Windsor Covered Bridge

Built in 1866, the Cornish-Windsor Bridge represented the first major step in the development and evolution of American wooden bridges.  This covered bridge is the longest wooden bridge in the United States.  The Cornish-Windsor Bridge is also touted as the longest two-span covered bridge in the world.

Total length: 449 ft 5 in (136.98 m)

Width: 24 ft (7.3 m)

Longest span: 204 ft (62 m)

No. of spans 2

3. Hartland

Hartland Covered Bridge

Constructed in 1901, the Hartland Covered Bridge was built as an alternative means to the ferry to cross the Saint John River.  This bridge has two historic facts.  First, the first person to cross the bridge before it opened was a doctor responding to an emergency call.  The workers placed planks over unfinished sections of the bridge so that he could cross.  Secondly, the Hartland Covered bridge is the world’s longest covered bridge.

Total length: 1,282 feet (391 m)

No. of spans 7

2. Hōrai

Hōrai Bridge

Touted as the longest wooden walking bridge in the world since 1997, the Hōrai Bridge is located in the city of Shimada, Shizuoka, Japan.  The bridge was built as a way for travelers to cross over the Ōi River during times of heavy flooding.  Although the wooden pilings have been long since replaced, the Horai bridge’s original wooden top still remains to this day.

Total length: 2,944 ft (897.422 m)

Width: 9 ft (2.7 m)

1. Kapellbrücke

Kapellbruecke Bridge

Known as the symbol of Lucerne, Switzerland, the Kapellbrücke is the world’s oldest surviving truss bridge.  The bridge was built initially as a defense fortification.  In addition, the tower that resides upon it was built three decades prior to the bridge’s construction.  Furthermore, the Kapellbrücke is Europe’s oldest wooden covered bridge.

Total length 672 ft (204.7 m)

No. of spans 27

Piers in water 28

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