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Amsterdam bridge faces collapse: ‘very bad’

It’s not yet clear how much the refurbishment program will cost as the city has just started checking the condition of the bridge, but it will be very expensive.Build ANP

City Councilman Sharon Dijksma said many timber bridges are in urgent need of repair. “Anything wooden is very bad. We knew they were badly neglected, but the latest test results are not good news.

Last year, the city began mapping 829 bridges, but only 21 have been fully inspected so far, and 10 were bad enough to be repaired.

Periodic inspection

It’s not yet clear how much the refurbishment program will cost as the city has just started checking the condition of the bridge, but it will be very expensive. Over the next few years he has secured 300 million euros, but last year the city council already expected him to spend an astronomical 2 billion euros in the long run.

Of the 43 bridges whose foundations were examined, 16 were found to be damaged. It is necessary to confirm the safety of about 140 people by the end of this year. Diksma said the percentage of bridges collapsing was even higher than expected, making this a very urgent issue. “We have to get on the ball. If a bridge is about to collapse, we can anticipate it in advance through monitoring and regular inspections. there is.

The city docks are in even worse shape. A survey of the first 80 high-risk locations revealed that they all needed replacement. The city of Diksma said it was taking action but still had to inspect 190 kilometers of quays, prioritizing those near fragile old cast-iron water and gas pipes. .

Innovation is essential, she says. She said, “If we want to solve all these problems in the next 20 years, she will have to work eight times faster than before.”

the city may come to a standstill

For years, the city has suffered from underinvestment in bridge and wharf maintenance. It started in the 1980s, when each district was responsible for its own maintenance, but not all districts made it a priority. Concerned officials were told the city would rather spend the money on social care and making Amsterdam more livable.Today, bridge maintenance is the responsibility of the mayor and executive committee.

Renovation programs are not only hugely expensive, but can also bring cities to a standstill. “If we started all the work at the same time, even if it were possible, the city would come to a standstill,” he says. “We need to come up with smart solutions.”


Divers examined wooden pilings under bridge 215, Paulusbroedersluis by Oudezijds Achterburgwal. The foundation was severely damaged and the bridge was quickly closed.

“It could have collapsed,” says city councilor Sharon Dyksma. The bridge is part of one of the few east-west cycle links through the city center between Jodenbreststrasse and the dam. An emergency bridge is currently being installed and the existing bridge will be reinforced. This means that boats will soon be banned from passing under the bridge.

When repairing bridges, the city evaluates whether the piles can be easily pulled out. This was done on the wooden piles of the three bridges crossing Herrengracht and Kaisersgracht, dating from 1727, 1886 and 1922. These were transported underwater by barge to Delft University of Technology for detailed examination.

https://www.parool.nl/english/amsterdam-s-bridges-face-collapse-it-s-very-very-bad~b5c187fb/ Amsterdam bridge faces collapse: ‘very bad’

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