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Heavy traffic on the Bosphorus Bridge, Istanbul

The Bosphorus Bridge, also called the First Bosphorus Bridge (Turkish: Boğaziηi Kφprόsό or 1. Boğaziηi Kφprόsό) is a bridge in Istanbul, Turkey spanning the Bosphorus strait (Turkish: Boğaziηi). The bridge is located between Ortakφy (European side) and Beylerbeyi (Asian side). It is a gravity anchored suspension bridge with steel pylons and inclined hangers. The aerodynamic deck is hanging on zigzag steel cables. It is 1,560 m long with a deck width of 39 m. The distance between the towers (main span) is 1,074 m (World rank: 13th) and their height over road level is 105 m. The clearance of the bridge from sea level is 64 m. It was the 4th longest suspension bridge in the world when completed in 1973, and the longest outside the United States of America.
For the structural engineering work, a contract was signed with the British firm Freeman Fox & Partners in 1968. The bridge was designed by the famous British civil engineer Sir Gilbert Roberts who also designed the Humber Bridge, Severn Bridge, Forth Road Bridge, Auckland Harbour Bridge and the Volta River Bridge. The construction started in February 1970, the ceremonies were attended by President Cevdet Sunay and Prime Minister Sόleyman Demirel. The construction was carried out by the Turkish firm Enka Construction & Industry Co. along with the co-contractors Cleveland Bridge & Engineering Co. Ltd. (England) and Hochtief AG (Germany). 35 engineers and 400 men worked on the project.
It was completed on October 30, 1973, one day after the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Turkey, and opened by President Fahri Korutόrk and Prime Minister Naim Talu.
No pedestrians and commercial vehicles like trucks are allowed to use the bridge today. Nowadays, around 180,000 vehicles pass daily in both directions, almost 85% being automobiles. On December 29, 1997, the one-billionth vehicle passed the bridge. Fully loaded, the bridge sags about 90cm in the middle of the span.
It is a toll bridge, and a toll plaza with 13 toll booths is situated near the bridge on the Asian side. A Toll is charged for passing from Europe to Asia, but not for passing in the reverse direction. Since 1999, some of the toll booths (#9 - #13), located to the far left as motorists approach them, are unmanned and equipped only with a remote payment system (Turkish: OGS) in order to speed up traffic. In addition to OGS, another toll pay system with special magnetic cards (Turkish: KGS) was put in service for use at specific toll booths in 2005. From April 03, 2006, toll booths will accept only KGS and OGS. From this date on, cash payments will be accepted only at the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge, about five kilometres to the north. In 2006 the toll was 3.00 YTL or about $2.00.

(Was benefited for note guidelines from Wikipedia / en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bosphorus_Bridge and Republic of Turkey General Directorate of Highways / www.kgm.gov.tr)

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Additional Photos by Seref Halicioglu (WepWaWet) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 355 W: 5 N: 629] (3798)
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