Sunday, April 28, 2013

Spanning the years

Evolution of the species
Quebec City, QC
July 2011
Just over 50 years separates the Quebec Bridge (1919) on the left and the Pierre Laporte Bridge (1970) on the right. Cantilever vs. wire-cable suspension. Heavily over-engineered for the railroad age vs. elegantly balanced for the automotive one. Whatever their design philosophy and however old they are, they're both mind-blowing in their own right.

If a third bridge were to be built here today, it would be different still, likely a cable stayed box girder which further pushes the efficiency envelope and is far more representative of how stuff gets built now. I love how technology continues to rewrite the landscape as it allows us to do more with less. Or simply to lead better lives.

However you cut it, it's more than a little inspiring to stand near two diametrically different examples of the best their respective ages had to offer. You can almost feel the passage of engineering history here.

Your turn: What other things get better with time?

1 comment:

dean said...

Marriage, if you're doing it right.