Monday, December 25, 2017

BRIDGE OF THE RESURGENCE

PONTE DEL RISORGIMENTO
1909/11 by the great French inventor and engineer Fran├žois Hennebique (1842/1921)
“He first developed his reinforced concrete system on a house project in Belgium in 1879 where he used concrete as a fireproof protection for wrought iron beams. In 1894, Hennebique built the first reinforced concrete bridge in Wiggen, Switzerland. His business developed rapidly, expanding from five employees in Brussels in 1896, to twenty-five two years later when he moved to Paris. In addition, he had a rapidly expanding network of firms acting as agents for his system. Hennebique's idea of strengthening concrete using iron and steel bars was the forerunner to the widespread modern reinforced-concrete method used in construction today” (National Inventors Hall of Fame - www.invent.org)
The span of the bridge is 100 m (330 feet) and the thickness at the center is only 85 cm (2.7 feet)
It was built on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the unification of Italy to link the areas set up for the international exhibition of Valle Giulia and the Prati district
It was the first bridge to be built in Rome with reinforced concrete and a single arch
It was later covered with stucco in imitation of travertine and so the structures of advanced technology with which it was built were hidden
“For its technical characteristics is one of the most significant works produced in the world in those years. (...) Some innovative solutions were adopted because of the limited capacity of resistance of the ground which advised both the use of a 'cell' structure - formed by a series of ribs orthogonal among themselves - rigid but very lightweight and thus able to greatly reduce the loads, both the testing of new techniques for the construction of the foundations themselves” (Piero Ostilio Rossi)

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