Cover image for Encyclopedia of bridges and tunnels
Encyclopedia of bridges and tunnels
Johnson, Stephen (Stephen Paul), 1954-
Publication Information:
New York : Facts on File, [2002]

Physical Description:
xvi, 381 pages : illustrations ; 29 cm.
Added Author:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
TG9 .J64 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize
TG9 .J64 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

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This reference presents more than 200 in-depth entries that document man's most significant engineering endeavours. In addition to introducing readers to the world's most important bridges and tunnels, the book also examines the technology that made them possible and the remarkable human dramas involved in their creation. Accounts of construction efforts, political struggles, life stories, and concise explanations of the principles behind bridge and tunnel engineering are illustrated with photographs that offer views of some of the most majestic structures in the world.

Author Notes

Stephen Johnson is a regular contributor to Gramophone and The Independent. He lives in London.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

A selective guide to bridges and tunnels worldwide, this volume presents information about circumstances, technologies, and people involved in these landmark projects. Entries for particular structures include name, dates of construction, and a short descriptive phrase (for example, London's Millennium Bridge is described as "Britain's wobbly symbol"), followed by a description of building materials and techniques and circumstances surrounding construction. Others among the more than 300 entries cover types of bridges and tunnels (Beam bridge, Cantilever bridge); principles, materials, and techniques of design and construction (Bridge aerodynamics, Concrete, Wetdrilling); events (Channel Tunnel fire, Lowe's Motor Speedway walkway collapse); personalities (reinforced concrete inventor Joseph Menier, Brooklyn Bridge designer John Augustus Roebling); and more. Length of entries ranges from three or four paragraphs to almost 10 pages for Golden Gate Bridge. Although there are no lists of further readings, there are an appendix for bridge and tunnel Web sites and a bibliography. An additional appendix lists longest bridges and tunnels by type. The reading level is not too technical and is appropriate for general readers, although it may not be detailed enough for a practicing engineer. The writing style tends to veer away from reportorial objectivity (for example, the entry for the Mostar Bridge in Bosnia notes that it was "vindictively blasted into rubble by Croat troops"), which some readers might find distracting. The Encyclopedia of Bridges and Tunnels nicely complements Encyclopedia of Architectural and Engineering Feats [RBB My 15 02]. Recommended for the technology reference collections of public and academic libraries.

Choice Review

Those who read this encyclopedia cover to cover will get a layperson's survey of bridge and tunnel engineering achievements of the 19th and 20th centuries. More than 200 jargon-free articles of varying length chronicle the most notable bridges and tunnels around the world; their designers, engineers, and project managers; evolution in bridge design (e.g., arch, bascule, cantilever, suspension); notable tunneling techniques and machines; advances in building materials; and the health problems experienced by construction workers building these engineering marvels. Over 70 high-quality photographs and illustrations supplement the text. Appendixes list the world's longest bridges and tunnels by type and include annotated high-quality Web sites focusing on bridges and tunnels. The work is well indexed, and the alphabetically arranged entries have good cross-references. The work's shortcomings are a strong US bias in the selection of structures, a bias toward early bridges, and a rather brief bibliography. Recommended for both public and academic reference collections. J. A. Buczynski Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology



The history of civilization is the history of travel and transportation. The building of bridges and tunnels to overcome the world's geographic obstacles has long been a measure of humanity's ambition and technological skill. Encyclopedia of Bridges and Tunnels is the first reference work to thoroughly explore all aspects of these marvels of human ingenuity. More than 200 in-depth, jargon-free entries introduce students, engineers, architects, and general readers to the world's most interesting and important bridges and tunnels. Technological engineering principles behind the construction of these landmarks and the remarkable human and political dramas played out behind the scenes are also covered. Over seventy photographs supplement the text and provide fascinating views of some of the world's most majestic structures. Appendixes include a listing of the world's longest bridges and tunnels by type and a directory of web sites for additional information. Excerpted from The Encyclopedia of Bridges and Tunnels by Stephen Johnson, Roberto T. Leon All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.