Technical details
Customer
Chilean Ministry of Public Works
Dates

March 2014: project start
December 2018: project completion

Missions
Preliminary Studies, Basic Design and Detailed Design
Localisation
Chacao, Chile
Activity
Suspension bridges

The Chacao suspension bridge, which connects Chiloé Island with mainland Chile by crossing the Chacao Channel, is the longest suspension bridge in Latin America. This project was launched by the Chilean Ministry of Public Works to boost the economic development of the area by facilitating access to the island.

The bridge

The Chacao bridge is the world’s longest double suspension bridge with three pylons.

The bridge is located near an active fault, and it is designed to resist severe seismic motion.

Our mission

SYSTRA, along with JV Partner, AAS-Jakobsen, was responsible for the full detailed design of the bridge. SYSTRA led the seismic studies and design, geotechnical engineering, and the design of the steel orthotropic deck, central pylon, suspension cable anchor blocks, and foundations.


The key technical challenges on this project are associated with the geometry of the bridge with two main spans and with the design under the seismic loads and the wind loads. Among others the contract included the determination of basic engineering data such as seismic and wind input data. One of the main challenges was to reach agreement on the design methodology for the concrete pylon under seismic loads as this type of bridge is not covered by the AASHTO code.

Project key figures

  • Total Bridge Length: 2,754m
  • Main Bridge Length: 2,494m for 4 traffic lanes
  • Main Spans: 1,155m and 1,055m
  • Width: 23.8m
  • 2,634m steel deck (main span and approach sections) for 4 traffic lanes
    • 3 Concrete pylons of more than 120m in height: 157m, 175m and 200m on deep foundations

The project in pictures