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News Release

Potain tower cranes construct the world’s second longest span suspension bridge in China


  • Six Potain tower cranes are helping to build one of the world’s longest span double-deck suspension bridges in Wuhan, Hubei province, China.
  • The cranes were selected for their unparalleled operational efficiency and reliability.
  • The project is being managed by China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group, a Potain customer for the last 20 years.


Six Potain cranes are working to construct a record-breaking bridge: the Yangsigang Bridge in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. The gigantic project involves the construction of a 4,134 m double-deck suspension bridge with a main span that stretches 1,700 m across the Yangtze River, the longest river in Asia.

With a long-standing partnership with Potain that dates back 20 years, the equipment rental division of China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group has supplied two Potain MC 475, two MC 310 K16 and two MCT 205 tower cranes to the project to build the anchor foundations and bridge towers. The two bridge towers will stand at 250 m once completed.

Xu Rongfeng, equipment manager for the Yangsigang Bridge project at China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group, said that Potain cranes have an exceptional track record on the company’s other large-scale projects. Understandably, once work started on the Yangsigang Bridge, Potain cranes were the first choice to construct the bridge towers – a core part of the project.

“The grand scale of the double-deck bridge across the Yangtze River makes the project highly challenging, and this is made even more difficult with the tight construction schedule,” he said. “The progress of construction hinges on the quality and performance of the equipment we use. Luckily, the reliability and operational efficiency we get with the Potain cranes gives us complete peace of mind.”

Two Potain MC 310 K16 and two MC 475 cranes are handling construction of the bridge towers. Standing at 51.8 m, the MC 310 K16 offers a 16 t capacity and a maximum of 70 m of reach while the Potain MC 475 provides a 25 t maximum capacity and up to 80 m of reach. Also speeding up construction are the 100 LVF 63 Optima winches of the MC 475 that spool 726 m of wire rope and can lift 25 t loads at up to 15 m/min when rigged in a four-fall configuration. The two MCT 205 units are constructing the anchor foundations.

The four Potain cranes building the bridge towers are lifting a variety of materials. The two MC 475 models offer a particularly impressive working configuration, and will require only six anchorages to reach their final working height for the 250m main bridge towers. This not only improves operational efficiency during the construction process, but also delivers cost savings.

Li Qiang, crane manager at China Railway Major Bridge Engineering Group’s equipment rental division, said:

“Potain cranes are far superior to their rivals in terms of rope capacity and lifting speed, and this is a big advantage on this project as efficiency and performance are top priorities. We can’t afford to have any machine breakdowns. When purchasing cranes, we look at the quality of the components and the design details that go into a machine. With the Potain cranes, we like the finish of the steelwork, which is corrosion resistant making them suitable for harsh environments, such as bridge construction sites which are almost always around water.”

To ensure the maximum amount of crane uptime, Manitowoc Crane Care staff have been paying regular visits to the job site, handling routine maintenance work and also training staff.

As the city’s first double-deck bridge, the new Yangsigang Bridge will serve as an express route between Hangyang district and Wuchang district, two of the three major towns in Wuhan. The bridge will carry ten lanes of traffic, with the upper deck being an expressway and the lower deck an arterial road. Upon completion, the project will become the longest suspended span bridge in China, and the, second longest in the world. It will be the first double-deck bridge across the Yangtze River and is expected to cost RMB8.5 billion (US$1.27 billion).

Construction is expected to complete in the first half of 2019.

About The Manitowoc Company, Inc.
The Manitowoc Company, Inc. (“Manitowoc”) was founded in 1902 and has over a 117-year tradition of providing high-quality products and support services that are tailored to customers’ needs. Its 2019 net sales were approximately $1.83 billion. Manitowoc is one of the world's leading providers of engineered lifting solutions. Through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, Manitowoc designs, manufactures, markets and supports comprehensive product lines of mobile telescopic cranes, tower cranes, lattice-boom crawler cranes, boom trucks and industrial cranes under the Grove, Potain, Manitowoc, National Crane, Shuttlelift and Manitowoc Crane Care brand names.
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