Over 10,000 feet above sea level, Europe's new highest suspension bridge is now open. Boasting views of Mount Titlis, the surrounding Alps and even glimpses of Italy, the swaying walkway is 320 feet long and hangs over 1,600 feet above the ground. It was built to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the construction of the Engelberg-Gerschnialp cable car.
On Friday, December 7, 2012, representatives from 15 countries ceremoniously opened the bridge with a walk across it, in wintry, white out conditions. Switzerland Tourism representative Ursula Beamish states that the bridge will probably hold a bigger draw for tourists in the warmer months, though snow is still known to fall in summer. The winds through the alpine pass can reach up to 120 miles per hour, which will hopefully attract thrill seekers from far and wide.
Construction of the bridge commenced in July, with the expertise of a construction company that specializes in mountainous projects. Cable cars transported the necessary building materials to the site, and helicopters delivered the larger pieces by air. The total cost of the bridge was $1.6 million.
According to Peter Reinle, a spokesperson for the Titlis Engelberg Ski Resort, the bridge has been built to last for 1,000 years. It can withstand the high winds, as well as over 500 tons of snow if need be. It will be open to visitors whenever the cable car is operating, usually daily, weather permitting - an exciting option for those planning a trip to Switzerland. Cost to ride the cable car and cross the bridge is currently about $90 USD.