Bridge Over Contreras Reservoir

The Contreras Bridge, a high-speed railway bridge over the Contreras Reservoir in Villagordo Cabriel, Spain, is an upper deck arch bridge with a main span of 261 meters. The sag at midspan is 36.94 meters, and the sag-span ratio is 1 / 6.77. At this moment, this bridge is the longest span arch railway bridge in Europe.The arch is founded over important plinths and footing to transmit the total load to the rock.

The arch cross section is a rectangular hollow section made of reinforced concrete. The span distribution of the upper deck is 32.625+12×43.50+32.625 meters. It’s a single box girder made of prestressed concrete that is 14.20 meters wide and 3.00 meters deep. The railway alignment consists of two circular curves with a radius 3,000 and 4,000 meters in plan and a parabolic alignment in the vertical plan with a radius of 25,000 meters. The arch has a polygonal curvilinear axis in a vertical plane.

The piers have a variable height from 3.53 to 35.376 meters. The arch has been built by a free cantilever system with a provisional steel tower and provisional stays. The upper deck was constructed span by span with a scaffolding truss on the approach spans and with a special centering supported on the arch for the spans located over it.

Designer’s role in the project and share of design entity: Manterola, Javier, Chief designer. Conceptual and detailed designer. Construction supervision.
Owner’s name and reference contact: ADIF. (Spanish Railway Administration)

CALTROP-CFC provided construction supervision for this project.

LOCATION: Villagordo, Spain
CLIENT: ADIF (Spanish Railway Administration)


  • High-Speed Railway Bridge
  • Concrete Arch
  • Prestressed Concrete Deck
  • Main Span: 261 Meters
  • Total Length: 587.25 Meters


  • Construction Supervision