"This is the opposite of our usual projects," said Haakon Haaversen, of the Norwegian Highway Department's Akershus County Office. Usually we have a place that needs a bridge, and we design one to fit it. But now we have a bridge design and had to search for a place that suits it."
Da Vinci designed the bridge in 1502 to Cross the Golden Horn Inlet in Istanbul. With a length of 1,155 feet it would have been the world's longest bridge. Sultan Bajazet II rejected the plan because he didn't believe it would work. The Highway Department is planning a modest 190-foot version
in Aas Township, about 1,500 miles north of the location where Da Vinci
had in mind. The department wants to replace an ugly pedestrian bridge across a main highway. A final decision is due in November.
The design pleases aesthete as well as engineers. The sketches show a graceful elliptical arch supporting the roadway which curves like an archers bow
Vebjørn Sand, saw an model of the bridge at an Art Exhibit in Stockholm and decided it had to be built . In 1995 he contacted Norwegian Highway Authorities and political leaders and gained broad support. Sand describes it as "the primordial bridge, the perfect blend of art and function."
"This is a bridge which has never been built but has been an inspiration to modern bridge designers," he said, it is the Mona Lisa, queen of bridges
To build Leonardo's bridge is to realize both history and art.