One of the artificial islands of the Hong Kong–Zhuhai–Macau Bridge, seen from above out of a plane.

Artificial Island

The Hong Kong-Zhuhua-Macau Bridge, photographed last November. 55km in total lengths, it’s the longest sea crossing in the world, liking the three cities that give it its name. The name is misleading, as it actually consists of three bridges, an undersea tunnel, and four artificial islands, one of which you can see in the picture.

From above, it seems even more unreal than from the data alone or pictures taken from the bridge itself. A long concrete line suddenly stopping in the vast sea, where suddenly a bridge becomes a tunnel. Somehow, my whole understanding of what it means to be a “bridge” or a “tunnel” rebel against this idea.

Reaching back into history, we feel a mixture of awe and wonder if we hear about “the seven wonders of the ancient world.” On the other side, many of the wonders of the late modern world seem mundane. Dams, bridges, sky scrapers, tunnels – after passing by hundreds of times, seeing images a thousand times, we might hardly notice them any more. And yet, how truly, utterly magical they must be for the average city dweller among us, who would probably struggle to build a wooden goose barn strong enough to survive the next storm.

Share your thoughts