Another ‘green’ construction , but much older than the Olympic stadium is the Hnngerfrod Bridge across the Thames from Charing Cross to the South Bank near the Festival Hall. The original bridge was built by Isombard Kingdom Brunel in 1845. It was a suspension bridge linking the north bank of the Thames with the Hungerford Market – hence the name.
When the railway company extended their track to the new Charing Cross station in 1859, they replaced the suspension bridge with a wrought iron gifder bridge designed by John Hawksmoor. At this stage, the suspension links were reused for the Clifton Suspension Bridge which still spans the Clifton Gorge in Bristol.
We rather take for granted today engineering standards but in Brunel’s day, they didn’t have any standard components. Brunel had to calculate the size and strength of the links needed for his design. All the links were individually cast on site and tested to ensure they were strong enough to support the calculated weights. That they are still in use today supporting the Clifton bridge is a tribute to Brunel’s engineering skill.