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USDA Forest Service
The Ocoee River made history during the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia, as the first-ever natural river to serve as the site for the whitewater canoe and kayak events. Bridges were needed to get spectators, officials and equipment across the raging rapids.
To meet this challenge, Betts Engineering chose a 10-ft. wide, 336-ft. long Continental® cable-stayed pedestrian bridge. The weathering steel bridge was delivered in six sections and assembled at the site.
Two steel towers and vinyl-coated steel cables were used to support the main structure. A four-span, 200-foot Steadfast vehicular truss bridge also was provided downstream to allow vehicles to reach the other side of the river.
The upper section of the Ocoee River is still in use today. The venue hosts national and international whitewater competitions, and is even open to the public for those who want to test their skills on the Olympic course. The Olympic media building is now a visitor’s center, and a hiking/biking trail crosses the cable-stayed bridge.
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