Hard infrastructure, i.e., highways, bridges, railroads, etc., aren’t often seen as some awe-inspiring examples of aesthetics that surround us. However, they certainly can be.
Hard infrastructure can be an impressive feat of engineering and beauty, whether it’s a straightforward solution that offers eye-pleasing symmetry or an elaborate design that adds extra pizzazz to the scenery. Add perfect timing and just the right angle, and you’ll be rewarded with stunning imagery.
If you’re up for celebrating the curves and lines of roads and dams, we might have the perfect Reddit community you can find here. In it, people share photos and their admiration for impressive structures that scratch their aesthetics itch. Check out some of the latest gems from the subreddit below. (H/T)
01. Thought You Would Be Interested In This Skew Bridge In Scotland
These feats of engineering excellence might dazzle you with their photogenic glory, but the infrastructure’s development processes make it far more impressive.
Infrastructure is often considered to be the backbone of the modern world. Complex infrastructure, especially with its intricate webs of transportation, network and power grids, and plumbing, are crucial to almost all city dwellers daily.
Engineers need to weigh many concerns when developing such vital parts of our everyday lives, the project’s purpose and structural integrity being the most obvious ones. However, these are not the only challenges they face.
02. Wildlife Crossing In Banff National Park, Canada
03. Heatherwick Rolling Bridge – Paddington Basin, London, England, UK
Infrastructure’s climate resilience is probably one of the most prominent issues. Engineers are encouraged to design structures that can withstand flooding, extreme temperatures, rising sea levels, and other physical impacts of climate change.
An example of this initiative is the call to replace gray infrastructure with green infrastructure. The difference between the two is that gray infrastructure focuses on sluicing away rainwater with the help of pipes and gutters, while the green type is all about capturing it using porous pavements, rain gardens, green roofs, and the like.
04. Bastei Walking Bridge – Germany – 1851
05. Magdeburg Water Bridge – Magdeburg, Germany
06. Čechův Most, Prague
Then, there’s also the impact of the infrastructure on nature. Deforestation is probably the first thing that comes to mind here, but there are other concerns. A study conducted by European Co-operation in the Field of Scientific and Technical Research shows that habitat loss, mortality, noise, and air pollution are the most apparent traffic effects on wildlife.
Furthermore, road barriers tend to isolate populations. And while it might seem that constructing wildlife corridors is an easy enough solution, it’s not all positive either, as it can invite nonnative pest species into the landscapes.
07. Devil’s Bridge – Bulgaria
08. The Ancient Roman Aqueduct In Segovia, Spain – Standing Since The 1st Century
09. The Falkirk Wheel, A Rotating Boat Lift In Scotland. It Replaces The Original 11 Locks On The Forth And Clyde Canal Junction With The Union Canal
In addition to affecting wildlife, infrastructure can negatively affect local communities. For example, building dams can destroy wetlands and dry river basins and leave people vulnerable to flooding or droughts. Infrastructure developments can also displace people and affect the livelihoods of nearby workers.
However, the positive effects of infrastructure can also be significant, often creating job opportunities for locals. Access to electricity and the internet can spur economic growth, while roads and telecommunication increase social connectivity.
10. Banff Wildlife Crossing Project, Banff, Alberta, Canada. Combined With Fencing To Keep The Animals Off The Road, The Structures Have Reduced Animal-Vehicle Collisions In The Area By More Than 80%
11. A Wall In Ancient Ostia Where The Bricks Were Laid According To The Scheme Called Opus Reticulatum, With Bricks Arranged Diagonally. The Ancient Romans Knew Earthquake Tremors Were Transmitted Diagonally, And This Could Cope Better Than A Horizontal Pattern
12. Millau Viaduct
At the other end of the scale for all these considerations is, of course, funding. According to experts, the US infrastructure is underfunded and lags behind the country’s economic competitors. Projected investment infrastructure gaps mainly affect the road networks, needing almost double the investments.
13. Dedicated Bus Lanes In The Middle Of The A40 Autobahn In Essen, Germany
14. High Trestle Trail Bridge – Boone County, Iowa
15. Elevated Metro Line Integrated Into Park It Passes Over In Kolkata, India
All in all, that’s quite a lot to consider. However, on top of it all, engineers don’t forget about the aesthetics of the projects they develop. They not only try to strike a balance between all the variables at hand, but they also aim to build something beautiful. These images are proof of their excellence.
16. Someone Recommended That I Post This Denver Light Rail Station Entrance On Here
17. Storseisundet Bridge – Norway
18. Kapellbrucke Chapel Bridge – Lucerne, Switzerland
19. Utrecht, The Netherlands: 50 Years Ago, This Canal Was Filled And Converted Into A Highway. Now It Has Finally Been Transformed Back, With Space For Cyclists And Nature As Well
20. A Novel High Voltage Electricity Pylon Called ‘Bog Fox,’ In Estonia By Part Architects
21. Tram From 1926 Still In Active Traffic On The Streets Of Stockholm, Sweden, November 2022
22. A Cycle Path That Goes Through A Lake In Bokrijk, Belgium
23. Royal Gorge Bridge – Fremont County, Colorado
24. Under Manchester Streets
25. Aqueduct Of Valens, Built In The Year Of 368 Ad In Constantinople
26. The Mozes Bridge (Loopgraafbrug) – Fort De Roovere, Halsteren, Netherlands
27. The Bridge Over The Mountain Spring Lake In Romania
28. Temporary Road Build Around A Landslide In Fukui Prefecture, Japan
29. Huangjuewan Interchange
30. The Entrance To What Once Was The Longest Railway Tunnel In The World. Northern Line, London Underground
31. Oil Rig In Brage Oil Field Located In The North Sea 120 Km Northwest Of The City Of Bergen
32. The Stockholm Telephone Tower With Approximately 5,500 Telephone Lines, 1890
33. Road Cut Through Taroko Gorge, Taiwan
34. The Lner Azuma Train Crosses Edinburgh’s Forth Bridge
35. Clifton Suspension Bridge – Bristol, England, UK
36. Suspension Rail In Wuppertal, Germany
37. Another Image Of The New Bicycle Storage In Amsterdam, With Space For 7000 Bikes Below The Water In Front Of Central Station
38. Gigantic Bridge In Germany, 158 Meter Tall, 1702 Meters Long
39. Crystal Palace Transmitter, London
40. Public Elevator In Luxembourg, Free As All Other Public Transportation
41. The Largest Solar Farm In The World: 14,000 Acres Located In Rajasthan, India
42. The Metro In Lausanne, Switzerland – The Smallest City In The World To Have A Full Metro System
43. Jacksonville, Florida Interchange
44. Bay Bridge, Looking Toward San Francisco From Treasure Island
45. 2004 Photo Of The Millau Viaduct In Southern France Under Construction
46. Marienbrucke Pedestrian Bridge – Schwangau, Germany
47. Bharati, India’s 2nd Research Centre In Antarctica
48. Worli-Bandra Sea Link, Mumbai, India
49. Due To The Destruction Of A Certain Russian Bridge, The Vasco De Gama Bridge In Lisbon, Portugal, Is Now The Longest (Usable) Bridge In Europe
50. The Tientsin Eye Yongle Bridge – Tianjin, China
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