Othmar Ammann

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Othmar Ammann
Othmar Ammann
Othmar Ammann (ETH Zurich)
Birthday/Birthplace March 26, 1879
Feuerthalen, Switzerland
Deceased September 22, 1965(1965-09-22)
Rye, New York
Citizenship Swiss
School(s) ETH Zurich
Profession(s) structural engineer
Credit for George Washington Bridge, Throgs Neck Bridge, Bronx–Whitestone Bridge, Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and Bayonne Bridge
Hometown Schaffhausen, Switzerland

Othmar Hermann Ammann (March 26, 1879 – September 22, 1965) was an American civil engineer and designer, he is credited with designing numerous bridges, some of the most famous being the George Washington Bridge, the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge and the Bayonne Bridge.

Othmar Ammann’s Biography

He was born in Schaffhausen, Switzerland in 1879. He studied engineering at the Federal Polytechnic School in Zurich. In 1904 he migrated to New York City to begin his work as a civil engineer. In 1905 he returned briefly to Switzerland to marry Lilly Selma Wehrli with whom he had 3 children before the death of his wife in 1933. He acquired American nationality in 1924. He married again with Karly Vogt Noetzli in 1935 in California.

The career of Othmar Ammann begins to stand out when writing studies about the collapse of bridges, in particular the collapse of the Bridge of Quebec and the Tacoma Narrow Bridge. The report he wrote about the Quebec Bridge was the one that initially gave recognition in the field of bridge design. For this same report, he got a job working for Gustav Lindenthal at the Hell Gate Bridge. In 1925 he was appointed bridge engineer of the Port Authority of New York. His design for the construction of a bridge spanning the Hudson River was chosen over the design of his mentor Gustav Lindental. The design of this bridge would become the George Washington Bridge project.

Under the direction of Othmar Ammann, the George Washington Bridge was completed six months earlier than planned and with a smaller budget than originally planned. Ammann continued working as Engineering Director of the Port Authority of New York until 1939. While working at the Port Authority of New York in 1934, his bridge work caught the attention of Robert Moses, another renowned builder, who recruited him to work for he. Four of the last six bridges that Ammann built in New York were built for the Robert Moses Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority. In 1946 Ammann and Charles Whitney founded the company Ammann & amp; Whitney. In 1964, Ammann opened the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, which by its time was the longest suspension bridge in the world with a clearing of 1,300 m. Ammann also contributed to the design of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

More Facts about Othmar Ammann

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