Forgotten project: The bridge between US and Russia

After the Stalin’s death in 1953 the power in the Soviet Union came to Nikita Khrushchev. The politics inside the biggest dictatorship on Earth turned from dark paranoid witch-hunt to though still oppressive but comparably milder race to prove the advantages of the socialist economy system over the capitalism.

The image of the United States inside the USSR also drifted from the arch nemesis to the most powerful competitor. Nikita Khrushchev strived to beat America in its own field. Huge efforts were put into the science and technology. And these efforts started to pay off pretty quickly.

Among the thousands different projects of different scale, from village to interplanetary ones, the one deserves our special attention.

The project of the bridge-dam between USA and Russia as published in the 1961 soviet book
The project of the bridge-dam between USA and Russia as published in the 1961 soviet book

This is the project of the bridge between the Russia and America, to be build over the narrow and shallow Bering Strait from the Russian Chukotka region to Alaska. It was published in a popular Encyclopedia for Kids in 1961, on the verge of the Khrushchev’s era.

This is what the text in Russian says:

In fair weather you can see the American shore from the Cape Dezhnev. The Bering Strait is the only possible way to link Asia and America by land. The distance between the railroad station Big Never (sic!) and the US railroad networks would be 7200 kilometers if passing through the Bering Strait, this is one and half times shorter than the way though the Pacific. The landline USSR-USA would be permanent, reliable and economically profitable. It would have the powerful locomotives and high-capacity cars. With the cruising speed more than 300 kilometers per hour such trains would get from the Trans-Siberian Railroad to the US railroad network in almost 30 hours.

The new 4000 kilometers long road (on the Russian side) would set the reliable link with the vast expanses of the USSR North-East and all its inexhaustible natural resources.

The line USSR-USA could be almost the same length as the Trans-Siberian Railroad. It measured 7400 kilometers between Chelyabinsk to Vladivostok and it was built in 15 years from 1891—1905.

But the Trans-Siberian Road was built by one state. And the new road is the intercontinental structure which could be built by the two countries in peaceful cooperation.

Description of the project in Russian
Description of the project in Russian

But if it was just a bridge this project was just another one in a pile. The idea of the Bering Strait bridge is not that unique. However, Russians went further, much further. They have actually planned to place the atomic-powered pumps beneath the bridge to drive the warm ocean current to the Northern shores of Eurasia and America thus making the northern parts of Russia, US and Canada more suitable for living.

Here the translation:

Now the man tries to artificially recreate such titanic powers as the ocean currents. The visions of changing the climate of the Northern Hemisphere are not the dreams anymore. Scientists and engineers are working on this problem. The science makes the first step to the controlled redistribution of the Earth’s heat.

And here is the idea to cap the Bering Strait with the gigantic bridge-dam. In the base of the dam the thousands pumps will be installed. Those will be powered by the atomic power stations.

The pumps would create the warm current from the Pacific ocean to the Atlantic, and such current could make the climate of the Siberia and the North America milder.

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