The construction of the Bayonne Bridge (New Jersey) in 1931 revolutionized the structural technique and design of bridges. It was mad exceptionally well that it incorporated materials and styles that had not been used at the time. The length of the structure made it the world’s largest bridge for many years before other structures were raised. As the first structure that used manganese steel, it is pioneered and revolutionized many aspects in construction of bridges and among other structures The impacts that the bridge had after its competition resulted into much more benefits to the communities linked by the construction.
Bayonne Bridge (New Jersey)
Architects and engineers have designed and come up with structures that proved to unique and exceptionally done both in the ancient and present times. Creativity and innovations have driven architects, artists and engineers involved in artistic work such as construction to come up with structures that have excited many people and generations. Bayonne Bridge designed exceptionally well to that produces patterns and beauty that adds to the natural world reduced by the water body that links the two cities together. Considering the distance that the bridge covers, it presents great artistic work and professionalism displayed through the patterns and balance that the structure displays. The curves and supports that are joined together reinforcing and strengthening the bridge shows an extensive knowledge and skill relating to structural information in architectural and engineering fields (Bayonne Bridge, 17 ). Analyzing the balance and shape of the structure and the models that result from joining of the pieces and materials used for creation of the bridge. It enables viewers and the audience analyzing the structure to get and formulate various themes and style presented by the great piece of structure. The balance and beauty displayed by the structure in addition to the natural beauty of the water bodies and the reflects from the skies, the sun presents a good view. It makes viewers appreciate both aspects of life that the human kind has produced as well as the natural world and the natural environment. This paper presents the Bayonne Bridge (New Jersey) by focusing on individual elements that were used in the construction depicting cultural values related to the bridge.
Bayonne Bridge (New Jersey) is located between New York and the New Jersey states. It connects Bayonne with Staten Island in New York. The bridge was built in the year 1931 and it has amazed many and attracted greatest media attention and coverage. At the time of its construction, it was the first longest bridge that attained the length and height. It impacted on the communities and people around the two states as it changed and replaced the ferry services that had been conducted for that along in the history of the two states where the structure is located. It remains the longest steel- arch bridge for many years in the world before other structures were built and, therefore, it impacted and influenced the construction of other structures that came afterwards (Sagner, 7). To date, it still continues to be celebrated as major an aesthetic and technical achievement that displays advanced skills and experience relating o engineering especially structural engineering. The 1675 foot bridge replaced ferry service, which had been the major source of transportation that linked the two states. It facilitated transportation of both passengers and goods for that long before the bridge was built. The construction of the bridge, therefore, impacted the lives of the people around the two states in many ways that shaped both the political, social and economic aspects of life for the two communities and states. The people of Bayonne peninsula and Staten Island revolutionized their lives as a result of completion of the Bayonne Bridge (New Jersey). The great length of the bridge and the design that presents the form of curve cuts across the length of the bridge of the top and bottom side presents a balanced structure as the dimensions and measurements of the structures give it great shape and look. The design of the bridge has also allowed the continuation of the navigation of the Newark bay the main shipping channels to the inland ports of Newark and Elizabeth in New Jersey. The port authority was responsible for the construction of the structure and its encouraged due to the expansion and growth that the two neighboring states and cities had witnessed. Bayonne Bridge was designed by an experienced and respected designer who had specialized on bridges and related structures Called Othmar Ammann. Cass Gilbert was the architect that was responsible for the construction of the bridge. Ammann was the chief engineer for the port of New York authority who was responsible for many other structures within the city that were constructed by the port (Billington, 9). The bridge led to many awards that resulted from its unique and exceptional design from various bodies due to the impact that the bridge had. The location of the bridge is placed at a strategic place that made it easy for planners from the two states to link it with other infrastructural facilities within the state such as roads that connected and easy connections after its completion. The two areas linked by the bridge has witnessed tremendous changes in terms of development and the areas of Bayonne and Staten Island
Culture and society
The construction of Bayonne Bridge was meant to convey and communicate much information to the outside world and other states in the US regarding New York and New Jersey at large. It was the first longest structural bridge in the world that had been made of steel that was well fabricated and exceptionally designed. It was intended to communicate to the outside world on various themes and issue regarding America and its people as a super power with full potential to do what others could only dream off. It was a pioneer in the design and construction that had never been seen elsewhere in the world and during its construction (Bayonne Bridge, 23). Many skeptics doubted the structure functionality and stability. The city of New York is among the greatest cities in the world due its exceptional structures and buildings that surround it were making it the recognized worldwide and internationally. Americans in general are known to have pioneered many features in terms of developments and discoveries and this fact has put the country and the people of America among the most respected country with great potential in many aspects. Bayonne Bridge, therefore, reinforced the status quo to the world. The pattern displayed by the structure that runs from the rails and supports used for the bridge presents a beautiful design. It is artistic appealing to the eye and this reinforced the creativity and love or art that the people around the structure and the states had. The culture of development and growth that characterizes many major cities was displayed through the structure and it portrayed the two states in a positive limelight that encourages innovation and creativity. The two states and the cities within them were expanding and growing at a faster rate and, therefore, the infrastructure and facilities that surrounded them had to be raised to measure up to the faster pace of development and growth. The political stability and leadership that was witnessed by then that majorly focused on development and growth of the society is displayed through analysis of the bridge due to the impacts that resulted from the two states after completion of the work. The city of New York is among the most fashionable cities with a population in that society experiencing high quality of life due to the many social amenities that are available in the city. The amenities includes stylish buildings, institutions, and roads among other infrastructures. The design and style of the bridge it communicates to the world about the lifestyle in the two states and the cities as the place that conforms to modernity and developments. The style and techniques displayed from the shape of the curve and the patterns that cut across the structure create a beautiful aesthetic view. It represents the society and culture of the people of New York and New Jersey as people who love and appreciates beauty from nature and human structures. There is competition between and among different states an in the US and this is displayed through high structures and buildings among other features that can describe the city and give them brand and trademark as greatest cities. Through construction of the Bayonne Bridge, it presents the two cities as among the leading cities and towns in the US and this has impacted of the city positively in many ways as it has attracted many businesses (Dorer & Cunningham, 21). It is noted that many more structures and bridges were built across many places in the US and the world at large that borrowed a lot from the style and design. The structure displayed on the outside world the competencies and skills available in America relating to civil and structural engineering as there was no foreign concept incorporated in the bridge as it was designed and built by renowned Americans who had pioneered and made other great works. It displayed the expertise in the field that the American society had relating to building and construction.
Construction of the structure
The technique and style for construction of the bridge were ne and different from the ones that had been witnessed earlier. The port authority had placed conditions for the construction of the bridge that could allow for future addition of rapid transit tracks and this was one factor that shaped and determined the material and style used for the construction of the structure. As a structure made of steel, it required extensive knowledge and skills among specialized machines, tools and equipments that could support its construction. The length of the water body that was to be covered made it necessary to get the required tools ad machines that could work in the surrounding that has large water mass. Most of the steel structures were fabricated from the workshops of the engineers and transported to the site for fixing (the Bayonne Bridge,13 ). As a project of the port, the port authority used most of its facilities to support the construction of the structures such as ferries and boats among other water bodied facilities to help the engineers in the transportation of the required materials across that water body that was comprehensive. Heavy equipments and machinery were used to transport the fabricated steel structures and in fixing them that was made with great care and professionalism. The steel design was chosen from the proposals that had been presented concerning the structure because it facilitated the requirements that had been described by the boards that were concerned with the design. It required a bridge that would support other infrastructural developments such as road and rails if possible and this reason made the board and Ammann refuse the suspension designs and the cantilever. The construction began in the year 1928 and was finished three years later in the year 1931.During the construction of the structure, continuation of ferry services had carried on until the full completion of the bridgeand this meant that proper coordination and control of the ferry services was required so that it could not interfere with the construction process. It was a massive project that requires extensive labor and this compelled the ports Authority that was responsible for the project to look for additional labor and workers to facilitate the smooth completion of the bridge of the building. Construction had been launched from both ends of the water body touching on Bayonne peninsula and Staten Island. During the construction, proper coordination and observation of safety measures was emphasized and prioritized and this led to minimal security concerns and issues noted. It required proper coordination between the ferries that had continued to offer services and the ones that were supporting the construction processes by carrying various materials such as still that and welding machines and equipments that were used to join the various pieces together. The construction of the structure increased and raised the level of curiosity and attention of the two states that the bridge linked them. During its final years, it attracted crowds of people that could gather around to have a piece of the great artistic work and pattern displayed by the bridge. This necessitated the construction team to reinforce security measures and prevent curious onlookers from accessing and coming closer to the structure for security purpose. It, therefore, led to coordination between the security department of the Port of New York and the law enforcement agencies of New York and New Jersey to intervene and control the crowds who would come from many parts of the country to witness the construction of the longest bridge in the world by then. Many people including local and international tourist frequented the place to take photos and get the excitement that resulted from the beauty of the structure.
Bayonne Bridge has been built using still. The construction used manganese steel that got noted as the first to be used in construction of such a structure. The main structural elements of the bridge used were manganese steel. Joining of the material together requires extensive welding and riveting skills that that used still rods and rivets (Billington, 32). The strength of the materials f steel gave it a characteristic of toughness and hardness resisting bend and scratch and this resulted into a much stronger structure. Concrete was also used in the early stages of construction to support the steel structures at the shores that laid the foundation and frameworks for the design and construction of the piece. Special concrete and cement was used to secure false work on solid rock below that water.It made it easy for the project and avoid expensive and costly anchorages and abuttal towers in the bridge design. The falsework towers were made of materials that were later used in the bridge and this resulted into many economic benefits in terms of the costs for the project. The manganese still used was ascertained using the compression press techniques to ensure that they matched the quality required to avoid development of problem later on through the course of the project. Still rods and bars were used to join the pieces together.
The design of the bridge is one element that has made the structure achieve great recognition and admiration. The design of the bridge influenced by an earlier structure called Hells Gate Bridge. Ommann was involved in the construction of the structure that was led and inspired by his mentor and friend Engineer Gustav Lindenthal (Richman,5 ). It required extensive knowledge and skills to come up wit the structure that included calculations of secondary stresses due to the size of the bridge. Advanced techniques in structural analysis and innovative systems of false work were included in the design. The design of the structure was meant in away that it supports an arch that sores 66 meters above the kill and supports a large road bed without piers. The design has been described as one resembling a parabola presented by the arch. The segments of the bridge are evenly spread given support to the main structures and this has resulted into a beautiful pattern. The length of the bridge is 1762 meters with the distance between the water and the structure placed at a 46 meters high. The construction and rails that form the segment make sit easy for wind to blow and cut across the structure without any significant impacts and damage to the structure. The arch and curve that cuts across the top and bottom side of the center of the structure where the roads are situated gives it strong balance and gravity. There are rails that support the upper curve and the middle piece of the structure that are strategically placed to counter secondary stresses.
The labor used for the construction of the structure involved structural engineers that require extensive and advanced skills to produce the piece. The engineers for the port authority of New York were overwhelmed by the amount of labor required for the entire process during its construction and they had to employ people during the three years that ate project was underway. Manual labor was also required in situations that did not require extensive technical skills such as welding and riveting the steel pieces together. Ammann took charge of the most of the technical work and he directed the entire course until the need whereby he gave out directions in term of the processes and labor required at the various stages of construction of the structure. Most of the workers at the port specially sailing the ferries and boats were suede to provide transportation service for the materials that were mainly steel to the required site. Issues of safety were also paramount and the project had several safety workers in the entire process of the construction due to the delicacy and risks involved in the process. Workers with skills in fabrication and riveting were paramount as that type of labor was necessary for the completion of the project.
If it were built today
The uniqueness and beauty of the structure that pioneered and shaped many aspects about construction of the structures put it among the modern and latest structures that would have been built and equated to in the current times. The extensive size and length that the bridge covers and unique style and design that is displayed from the construction make it equated to the most modern and stylish construction in the contemporary times. There are numerous bridges built in the recent times that have displayed equally advanced styles and design. Bayonne Bridge can be equated to a modern bridge called Python Bridge that is located at Amsterdam Eastern harbor. The design of the bridge curves and forms that shape of a python. The structure has rails that are evenly spread producing a great piece with great views. The structures that support the main frame made of steel presents a good view and piece of the structural piece that can be equated to Bayonne Bridge found in Amsterdam if it were build in the modern times. The reason given is because the two structures share much in terms of the similarities in the patterns and materials used theta give each piece an outstanding look and pattern that presents a similarity. The curve and arch displayed by the two structures presents a similarity that makes them easy for the viewer to relate the two structures. The spacing and size of the structure are also looking more or less the same that results into a beautiful environment when the water beneath the bridge reflects the clouds and the sun displaying a beautiful aesthetic view. The location of both structures is also found in the big cities of the respective countries representing and symbolizing development and progress in the urban centers and towns with great social amenities.
Bayonne Bridge, Over the Kill Van Kull between Port Richmond, Staten Island, New York and Bayonne, New Jersey: Addresses Delivered at Dedication, November 14, 1931. New York: port of New York authority, 1932. Print.
Billington, David P. The Tower and the Bridge: The New Art of Structural Engineering. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1985. Print.
[the Bayonne Bridge]. New York, NY: Public Affairs Dept., the Port Authority of NY & NJ, 1981. Print.
Richman, Steven M. The Bridges of New Jersey: Portraits of Garden State Crossings. New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press, 2005. Internet resource.
Dorer, Harry, and John T. Cunningham. This Was New Jersey: As Seen by Photographer Harry C. Dorer. New Brunswick, N.J: Rivergate Books, 2007. Print.
Sagner, Alan. In the Matter of the Bayonne Bridge, George Washington Bridge, Goethals Bridge, and Outerbridge Crossing Tolls Public Docket 76-9: Statement of Hon. Alan Sagner, Commissioner, New Jersey Department of Transportation. New York, NY: Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, 1976. Print.