The Grand Canyon Skywalk

Wednesday, 28 December 2011 - 01:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Museums, Exhibitions
Reading Time:  4 minutes

Eagle Point - Skywalk and Colorado River © Laslovarga

Eagle Point - Skywalk and Colorado River © Laslovarga

The Grand Canyon Skywalk is a transparent horseshoe-shaped cantilever bridge and tourist attraction in Arizona near the Colorado River on the edge of a side canyon in the Grand Canyon West area of the main canyon. USGS topographic maps show the elevation at the Skywalk’s location as 4,770 ft (1,450 m) and the elevation of the Colorado River in the base of the canyon as 1,160 ft (350 m), and they show that the height of the precisely vertical drop directly under the skywalk is between 500 ft (150 m) and 800 ft (240 m).

Commissioned and owned by the Hualapai Indian tribe, it was unveiled March 20, 2007, and opened to the general public on March 28, 2007. It is accessed via the Grand Canyon West Airport terminal or a 120-mile (190 km) drive from Las Vegas, which includes a 10-mile (16 km) stretch of dirt road which is currently under development. The Skywalk is east of Meadview and north of Peach Springs with Kingman being the closest major city.

© Laslovarga © Laslovarga Guano Point - Colorado River © Laslovarga Guano Point - Colorado River © Laslovarga Eagle Point © Laslovarga Eagle Point - Skywalk © Laslovarga Eagle Point - Skywalk and Colorado River © Laslovarga
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Eagle Point - Skywalk and Colorado River © Laslovarga
According to Hualapai officials, the cost of the Skywalk was $31 million. Future plans for the Grand Canyon Skywalk complex include a museum, movie theater, VIP lounge, gift shop, and several restaurants including a high-end restaurant called The Skywalk Café where visitors will be able to dine outdoors at the canyon’s rim. The Skywalk is the cornerstone of a larger plan by the Hualapai tribe, which it hopes will be the catalyst for a 9,000-acre (36 km2) development to be called Grand Canyon West; it would open up a 100-mile (160 km) stretch along the canyon’s South Rim and include hotels, restaurants, a golf course, and a cable car to ferry visitors from the canyon rim to the Colorado River, which has been previously inaccessible.

The overall Skywalk width is 65 feet (20 m). The Skywalk length extending out from the post supports closest to the canyon wall is 70 feet (21 m). The outer and inner 32-inch-wide (810 mm) by 72-inch-deep (1,800 mm) bridge box beams are supported by eight 32-by-32-inch (810 × 810 mm) box posts having four posts on each side of the visitor’s center, once completed. The eight posts are anchored in pairs into four large concrete footings that are in turn anchored to the bedrock by ninety-six 21⁄2-inch-diameter (64 mm) DYWIDAG high strength steel threaded rod rock anchors grouted 46 feet (14 m) deep into the rock. The deck of the Skywalk has been made with four layers of Saint-Gobain Diamant low iron glass with DuPont SentryGlas interlayer. Deck width is 10 feet 2 inches (3.10 m). The Skywalk glass railings were made with the same glass as the deck, but fewer layers (two) bent to follow the walkway’s curvature. The glass railings are 5 feet 2 inches (1.57 m) tall and have been designed for high wind pressures.

Read more on Grand Canyon Skywalk and Wikipedia Grand Canyon Skywalk.




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