Bridges (some famous examples)
Regensburg - Steinerne Brücke (Stone Bridge)
The Old Stone Bridge, a masterpiece of medieval engineering, was built between 1135 and 1146 and for much of its 800-year history was the only bridge that crossed the Danube (Donau) at Regensburg. The bridge was a symbol of the wealth of Regensburg's merchants as it opened major international trade routes between Northern Europe and Venice, and this started Regensburg's golden age as a city of wealthy trading families.
Rügendamm (Rügen bank, Germany)
During a long period is was not clear how to finance the additional bridge connecting Stralsund (Germany) and the German island Rügen (East sea). Similar to other big bridge building projects, the German Ministry of Traffic (Bundesverkehrsministerium) wanted at first to finance the construction on a private basis. A call for proposals including the construction, the finance, and the operation at corresponding toll charges was finally stopped. Interested private firms argued the demand for traffic would fluctuate too heavily (summer/winter) and the traffic forecasts would be too optimistic with regard to the construction costs and the admissible charges. As a consequence, the Federal Government decided to realize the bridge at a cost of 85 mill. Euro on its own. See Bernd Nebel (external link).
Great Belt Bridge (Denmark)
The Great Belt Fixed Link (Danish: Den faste Storebæltsforbindelse) is the fixed link between the Danish islands of Zealand and Funen across the Great Belt. It consists of a road bridge and railway tunnel between Zealand and the islet Sprogø, as well as a bridge between Sprogø and Funen. The link replaces the ferries which had been the primary means of crossing Great Belt for more than 100 years. After decades of speculation and debate, the decision to construct the link was made in 1986; while it was originally intended to complete the railway link three years before opening the road connection, the link was opened to rail traffic in 1997 and road traffic in 1998. At an estimated cost of DKK 21.4 billion (1998 prices), the link is the largest construction project in Danish history. See Wikipedia: Great Belt Bridge.
Italy - Sicily
The Italian government is officially looking for a contractor to complete a bridge that would connect the island of Sicily to the mainland of (Calabria) Italy across the Messina Strait (this is the place where Scylla and Carybdis threatened Odysseus, which Hercules swam and the Argonauts sailed). The project has been a hotly debated topic of conversation for many years. The bulding of the bridge has much opposition, mainly from the shipping companies that operate the ferries that currently make the transit, claiming it would cause a huge loss of jobs for the region. Some of the features of the bridge will include: eight traffic lanes, two rail lines, estimated to carry 100,000 vehicles per day, will take six years to be completed.