Dordrecht Island #2 – Bridge Over The Wantij

Today I thought I’d take a look at a lift-bridge over the Wantij river in Dordrecht. The bridge is located to the east of the city of Dordrecht, near the chemical plant I talked about in my first post on this area of the Netherlands last week.

_DSC3702 by Martijn Deleij – Own work,
Used with permission of Martijn Deleij, View Image

It’s an unusual looking structure, maybe not to everyone’s tastes (there seems to be a lot of ‘modern’ rail and bridge architecture in the Netherlands) but it would definitely make a very interesting bridge module and scratchbuilding project. 

The bridge is to the north east of Dordrecht and is shown on the map below by the blue marker.

View Larger Map

The bridge carries both passenger and freight traffic as it lies between Dordrecht Stadspolders and Sliedrecht train stations (which is to the north, just off the map). The rail-served Chemours chemical plant is reached via the branch just north of the bridge. 

Arriva – Spurt/GTW @ Wantijbrug (2) by Paul Van Baarle – Own work, Used with permission of Paul Van Baarle, View Image

With the help of Google translate I’ve discovered that the current bridge was built in 1997, alongside the previous bridge that was reaching the end of it’s life. You’ll find a very detailed explanation of how the bridge was built and some images of the old bridge in a thread on this Dutch language construction forum. The thread includes lots of detailed pictures of various parts of the bridge that would be very helpful during a scratchbuilding attempt.

As it’s a relatively small bridge, it’s actually a perfect fit on the 105cm x 40cm modules that I have decided to use. You could combine this bridge module with others representing the chemical plant and surrounding area. If you had enough room you could even add a couple of modules to represent other parts of Dordrecht island and even Dordrecht Stadspolders or Sliedrecht stations.

Below is another slightly wider view of the bridge and approach tracks taken from the south bank of the Wantij (you can see the chemical plant in the background). Note the break in the catenary wires, which I’ve read is actually quite a common feature on lift bridges; the train just rolls across the break.

Wantij railbridge by Martijn Deleij – Own work,
Used with permission of Martijn Deleij, View Image

There are actually quite a few photographs of this bridge, from many different angles, dotted around the web on sites like Flickr. Combine these with some scaled satellite images and it should be possible to make a fairly accurate representation of the bridge.

Finally, thanks to Martijn Deleij and Paul Van Baarle for allowing me to use their images in this post.

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