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Overpass Collapses in Central Brasilia

Friday, February 9, 2018

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A highway overpass in central Brasilia collapsed partially Wednesday (Feb. 6), renewing concerns about the state of infrastructure in the Brazilian capital, planned and built in the 1950s and ’60s and, some say, not maintained well since.
Two lanes of the Eixão Sul fell to the ground below, around 11:30 a.m. local time, according to reports, landing in an area near another roadway. The property that the roadway fell to is reportedly used for parking and as outdoor seating for a restaurant. No one was reported injured, though several unoccupied cars are said to have been destroyed.

According to the BBC, City Governor Rodrigo Rollemborg said this particular stretch of road had not been part of recent efforts to rehabilitate roadways in the city, noting, “Brasilia is a city that is aging. It’s a city made of concrete.”

According to Brazilian news source Globo, the city’s Civil Defense said after the collapse that there was still the potential for another concrete slab to fall. The director of the city’s roads department told Globo that there were cracks visible in the area that collapsed, and that other parts of the roadway could be at risk for collapse as well.

Busy Road, Central Location

The site of the collapse is a busy segment of Eixão Sul in the center of the Federal District. The six-lane elevated highway cuts through the middle of the city’s downtown area, and the incident occurred within blocks of monuments like the national library, national museum and government offices.

Brasilia was conceived in the 1950s by architects Lúcio Costa Oscar Niedermayer as a new capital for Brazil, more centrally located than Rio de Janiero, the previous capital. The first phase of the construction of the city was carried out in four years, from 1956 through 1960, at which point the city became the nation’s capital.


Tagged categories: Accidents; Bridges; concrete; Infrastructure

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