Whistler SkyBridge

Project name: 
Whistler SkyBridge
Project category: 
Infrastructure
Company: 
Apex Structural Design Ltd.
Project location: 
Canada

Cloudraker SkyBridge and Raven’s Eye Cliffwalk gracing the top of the World Summit of Whistler Mountain

A new and thrilling attraction graces the top of the World Summit of Whistler Mountain.

The Cloudraker SkyBridge and Raven’s Eye Cliffwalk is a new 130-meter-long steel pedestrian suspension bridge leading to a cantilevered viewing platform, anchored into rock and projecting 12.5 meters out from the mountain’s edge. At more than 2100 meters above sea level, it is thought to be the highest pedestrian bridge in North America, and offers access to spectacular 360 degree views of the Whistler Valley and surrounding mountain peaks. Visitors can literally walk in the clouds.

 

Challenges that made the project successfull

This design-build project was an impressive feat of engineering and construction. The structures are designed for year-round operation for pedestrian, snow, ice, wind and seismic loading. The SkyBridge is supported and stabilized by four steel cables, each with an ultimate capacity of over 2250 kN (500,000 pounds) and fixed to the mountain at each end by 14 steel-grouted bedrock anchors. Both structures have open grate steel decking and the main bridge has 101 removable deck modules to allow for decommissioning and maintenance in the off-season. The Cliffwalk is supported on 4 main steel beams that are held in place with six vertical rock anchors. The beams each weigh over 2300 kg (5000 pounds) and were flown into place with a Kaman K-Max dual rotor helicopter until the anchor nuts were installed!

Many logistical and technical challenges, including unpredictable weather and a short construction season, were overcome to ensure the successful opening of The Cloudraker Skybridge and Raven’s Eye Cliffwalk in Summer 2018

 

benefits of using BIM and Tekla software

Design-build meetings were hosted with Tekla Structures for all the project team members to visualize the unique structure and was a very important tool in the overall success of the project. The compound sloping geometry of the A-frames at each end of the SkyBridge was made possible with Tekla. The Cliffwalk also required complex geometry due to the curved nature and camber requirements.

 

The project in numbers

  • 130 meters long
  • 2100 meters above sea level
  • 12.5 meter cantilever
  • 360 degree views
  • 101 removable deck modules
Length
130 meters
Sea Level
2100 meters above
Cantilever
12.5 meter
Removable Deck Modules
101
Tekla Structures

20908