The world's longest plastic bridge is located in Kentucky

Anita Durairaj
The world's longest plastic bridgePhoto by J654567; Wikimedia Commons; CC-BY-SA-3.0

The Forrest and Maxie Preston Memorial Bridge is considered to be the world's longest "plastic" bridge because its deck is made of glass fiber reinforced polymer composites.

The swinging bridge is located in River, Johnson County, Kentucky. It serves as a footbridge that spans 420 feet and crosses over the Levisa Fork of the Big Sandy River in Johnson County. The bridge connects the communities of Offutt and River.

The bridge was first completed in 1999. The bridge replaced a wooden plank bridge that was first built in the 1930s and had fallen into disrepair. It used to be the only way to get to the small community of River.

The deck of the bridge was designed by Dr. Issam Harik, a professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Kentucky.

The deck and the beam are made out of composites. The fiberglass decking is supported with steel towers and suspension cables.

The bridge is classified as a FRP suspension bridge. FRP stands for Fiber Reinforced Polymer. The benefits of FRP is that it requires no maintenance. It also easily forms into the shapes that are needed for construction. In addition, it is easy to install and resistant to corrosion. Thus, it is expected that the world's longest plastic bridge in Kentuck will last for a hundred years.

At the time, the renovation of the bridge cost $527,560. The project involved numerous agencies and engineering contractors.

The world's longest plastic deck suspended footbridge continues to attract visitors to the community of River as it is a novelty in the area.

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.


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