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Last Updated: Friday, 21 July 2006, 10:43 GMT 11:43 UK
New Paris bridge suffers wobble
Simone de Beauvoir bridge
The bridge is part of Mayor Bertrand Delanoe's regeneration project
An elegant new footbridge over the Seine in Paris has suffered trembles similar to those that famously dogged London's Millennium Bridge.

But the mayor of Paris, who opened the bridge on 13 July, said the tremble was only faint and it would remain open.

Bertrand Delanoe said the Simone de Beauvoir bridge - named after the leading feminist and writer - needed only "adjustment and tuning".

London's bridge closed within days for repairs after showing a serious wobble.

Pool problems

The Simone de Beauvoir bridge was erected in the hope of bringing more people to a lesser-known part of the Seine, between the French National Library and the Parc de Bercy in the south-east.

Mr Delanoe, who had opened the bridge to much fanfare, insisted it was not suffering "stability problems".

Location of the new bridge in Paris

He said the nature of the bridge meant it would see "oscillations under the effect of a crowd".

However, he said it was built with shock absorbers at its extremities that "required adjustment and tuning to optimise their effectiveness in controlling the effect of crowds".

The adjustments were already being undertaken, he said.

Designed in the form of two steel intersecting curves without supporting pillars, the bridge is reserved for pedestrians and cyclists.

It was named after the lifelong companion of existentialist philosopher Jean Paul-Sartre who made a name for herself with the 1949 book The Second Sex.

The 304m (1,000ft) bridge is part of the planned extension over the next two months of the successful beach project Paris Plage.

A swimming pool that is part of the project had to close for repairs three days after opening this month because of faulty air conditioning and loose tiles.

London's 18m ($33m) Millennium Bridge opened on 10 June 2000 as the first new Thames crossing in more than 100 years.

Tens of thousands crossed the bridge on its opening day but the structure suddenly developed a very worrying and obvious wobble.

Modifications cost another 5m.


SEE ALSO
French reassess 'iconic' Sartre
21 Jun 05 |  Europe

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