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The Top 5 Modern Civil Engineering Wonders of the World

structural designStructural design continues to improve as the field of civil engineering learns to build bigger, better, safer, and more sustainable buildings across the globe. From far-reaching bridges to man-made islands, we are creating structures that bring people together and support human life. Here are five of the most impressive civil engineering feats of the modern era.

Akashi Kaikyo Bridge
Located in Japan, this bridge is the world’s longest cable bridge. It has no pillars for support, spanning 1,991 meters (6,532 feet). Also known as the Pearl Bridge, it links the city of Kobe to Iwaya on Awaji Island, crossing the Akashi Strait. While more than 25% of bridges in the U.S. reportedly need significant repairs or are taking on more traffic than they were designed to carry, the Pearl Bridge has a well-crafted structural design that can withstand an earthquake with a magnitude of up to 8.5 on the Richter scale.

Beijing National Stadium
Also known as the “Bird’s Nest” for its bowl shape and lattice-like structural design, this elaborate stadium was built by Swiss civil engineer services for the 2008 Olympics. Located in Beijing, China, it is currently the world’s largest steel structure, made from about 3,280 feet of unwrapped steel.

Palm Islands
The Palm Islands , located in the Persian Gulf, off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, is officially the world’s largest artificial island. The three man-made islands were created by a process called “rainbowing,” which includes using ships to fill the seabed with sand. Including 3 billion cubic feet of sand, the Palm Islands contain 1,500 villas.

Channel Tunnel
Also known as the “Chunnel,” this magnificent work of civil engineering is the longest underwater tunnel on earth. Measuring 32 miles, the tunnel links Folkstone, England to Coquelles, France beneath the English Channel. Construction was completed in 1994 and the 100-mile per hour trains serve the transportation needs of over 7 million people each year, taking passengers from one country to the other in only 20 minutes.

Bailong Elevator
Located on the side of a cliff in Zhangjiajie, China, the Bailong Elevator is the highest and heaviest outdoor elevator on the planet. It is also known as the “Hundred Dragons Elevator” and carries up to 50 people at a time from the bottom to the top in just two minutes.

Civil engineering isn’t just about monuments and massive skyscrapers. A civil engineering company in Florida may take on the extremely important job of constructing a city’s roads, highways, and bridges. Want to learn more about civil engineering? Post your questions in the comments section below.

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