In the United States, we drive on the right side of the road. And that doesn’t change from place to place. What if you had to switch lanes? We’ll see. Today, on Engineering Works!
If you live in Hong Kong and want to drive into the People’s Republic of China, you do have to switch. In Hong Kong, cars and trucks drive on the left side of the street. That’s because Hong Kong used to be a colony of Great Britain, where they drive on the left, too. But in the People’s Republic, they drive on the right, like most of the rest of the world.
You can see this might cause problems. Getting people driving back and forth to change lanes without a traffic jam or a big pileup. Engineers in Holland have come up with a solution. A nifty bridge over the Pearl River, which separates Hong Kong from the mainland.
On the bridge, the traffic lanes take a sort of figure-eight path so the lanes of traffic heading in one direction swoop over or under the lanes carrying cars and trucks from the opposite direction. When you get to the other side, you’re automatically in the proper lane.
Some critics say it would be cheaper and easier to build a simple double-decker bridge without all the swoops. But what do they know? This is way cool.
Anyway, traffic outside is running in our direction and we’re out of here. See you next time.
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Start the discussion: We know that there are simpler ways to build bridges that do what this one does. But is simpler always better? Let us know what you think.