|Carries||Motor vehicles and pedestrians|
|Locale||Downtown Core, Singapore|
|Official name||Esplanade Bridge|
|Total length||280 m (919 ft.)|
|Width||46 m (150 ft.)|
|Constructed by||Obayashi Corporation|
The Esplanade Bridge is a 261-metre-long (850 ft.) road bridge that spans across the mouth of the Singapore River in Singapore with the Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay on its northern abutment and the Merlion on the southern. The 70 metre-wide (230 ft.) low-level concrete arched bridge has seven spans and supports two four-lane carriageways and walkways along both sides.
The bridge was built to provide faster vehicular access between Marina Centre and the financial district of Shenton Way and to displace traffic from St Andrew's Road and Connaught Drive. Construction of the bridge began in early 1994 and was completed in March 1997. Service 501 is the first bus route to pass by the Esplanade Bridge. On 10 July 1999, the right turn from Hill Street to Bras Basah Road is prohibited, and motorists had to use High Street and Parliament Place, together with the St Andrew's Road. The main contractor was Obayashi Corporation while the street lamps were designed by Light Cibles. The bridge then blocked views of the Merlion statue from the Marina Bay waterfront, raising a need for the original Merlion statue to be relocated from the back to the front of the bridge.
Occasional road closures
The bridge offers panoramic views of Marina South and the rest of Marina Bay. However, this also makes it subject to occasional road closures on special occasions, where the bridge closes to all road traffic to allow spectators and pedestrians to observe fireworks seen during the National Day celebrations, New Year's Eve and the Singapore Fireworks Celebrations. On these nights, the bridge is usually full of onlookers. The street lights on the bridge are usually turned off before the fireworks start, and turned on after their completion.
The bridge also forms part of the Singapore Grand Prix's Marina Bay Street Circuit, which debuted on 28 September 2008, and therefore has to be completely closed for the duration of the racing weekend.
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