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Visiting the Renory Bridge, Belgium: huge structure crossing the Meuse River

Updated on November 9, 2012
Flag of Belgium
Flag of Belgium | Source
An arch of Renory Bridge
An arch of Renory Bridge | Source
Renory Bridge
Renory Bridge | Source
Map location of Séraing, Liège province
Map location of Séraing, Liège province | Source

A monumental rail crossing of 680 metres' length

This huge structure which crosses the Meuse River at Renory, near Liège, in the Walloon region (French: Région wallonne ) is among the largest of Belgium's bridges. Known as the Renory Bridge (French: Pont de Renory ), it dates from 1930 and is executed in reinforced concrete.

Such is its size that it seems to dwarf everything else at Renory, which forms part of Séraing, near the City of Liège.

Three arches span the Meuse River, carrying two railroad lines, with additional arching over land. The Liège-Séraing area is highly industrial in character and the Greater Liège is among the most populous of urban areas, and thus in the interwar years the need for a heavy duty rail bridge with twin lines was seen as compelling.

The Renory Bridge is 680 metres long. To give some length perspective to North Americans, it is longer than the Queenston(NY)-Lewiston(ON) Bridge (at 488 metres), slightly longer than the MacArthur Bridge, between Detroit, Mi., and Belle Isle, Mi. (at 668 metres), longer than the Madison Avenue Bridge, New York City (at 577 metres) but — significantly — shorter than the Brooklyn Bridge, New York City (at 1825 metres).

At least since Roman times, the Meuse River has been very important in commerce. However, it was not until the 19th and 20th centuries that really major construction projects — such as the one responsible for the Renory Bridge in 1930 — facilitated the large volume passage of people and goods on fixed crossings of the River.

November 9, 2012

Also worth seeing

In Séraing itself, the City Hall (French: Hôtel de ville ) is an ornate building; in the city also is the former summer palace of the Prince-Bishops of Liège.

In Liège (distance: approx. 9 kilometres), its abounding visitor attractions include: much, fine ecclesiastical architecture; the Perron steps; the Fragnée Bridge; the Zénobe Gramme Monument; the Bueren Mountain; the former Prince-Bishops' Palace; and many others.


How to get there: Brussels Airlines flies from New York (JFK) to Brussels Airport, where car hire is available (distance from Brussels Airport to Séraing : 94 kilometres). The Belgian railroad company SNCB / NMBS maintains a service from Brussels to Séraing . Some facilities may be withdrawn, without notice. You are advised to check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information. Please refer to appropriate consular sources for any special border crossing arrangements which may apply to citizens of certain nationalities.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

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