14 August 2011

Where are they now? Part 3

Here's another batch of bridges which I featured on this blog during 2009, and have barely mentioned since. What has happened to them? How many have survived the great black hole of indifference?

North Coast Harbor Bridge
In September 2009, I posted details of six alternative options for an opening footbridge in Cleveland, USA, designed by Miguel Rosales. Judging from a recent news story, the US$5.5m twin-bascule drawbridge option got the nod, and is due to be built starting in 2012. Aviation restrictions seem to have ruled out the city's preferred single-bascule option.

Sheffield Parkway
I revealed proposals from Scott Wilson for a new footbridge over the A630 Sheffield Parkway in October 2009 (pictured). This was a much cut-down design which had replaced Tim Nørlund and Ramboll's previous RIBA-competition winning entry, ditched due to lack of budget. I've tried to find out whether the bridge is still going ahead, but without any luck.

Copenhagen Harbour Bridge
October 2009 also saw the announcement of a winning design for a new opening footbridge in Copenhagen. The winner, from Studio Bednarski and Flint and Neill, is an unusual retractable bridge. The project looked to be well organised and well funded, but I haven't found any further information on progress. Does anyone know whether design is complete, or a contractor appointed?

Johnson Street Bridge, Victoria
I reported several times on the battle between historic bridge preservationists in Victoria, Canada, and their local council, who appeared determine to replace a rare heel-trunnion bascule bridge with a new structure designed by Wilkinson Eyre (pictured). The story rumbled on into 2010, leading up to a town referendum in November 2010 on whether to borrow the money required to build a new bridge. I didn't keep up with the news, and didn't report the referendum result: the council won by a significant margin. In January 2011, geotechnical investigations for the replacement bridge commenced. In March, defects found in a structural inspection led to the closure of the existing rail span. It is due to be demolished next year.

Preliminary design of the new bridge is currently underway, and due to be complete in Autumn this year. The overall project completion date is targeted as March 2016. The new bridge will be a highly impressive structure, and definitely one to watch.

The heritage campaigners have shifted their focus to arguing for retention of a rail route on the new bridge.

Galp Energia Bridge
I reported on the winner of a contest to design a new foot and cycle bridge in Lisbon (pictured). This was essentially a vanity competition, run to support a design biennale, with an attractive prize fund but no firm plans to actually build anthing. Unsurprisingly, I've not found any sign that the design went any further.

Okay, that will do for now. I will do a final batch of catch-ups from 2009 in a couple of weeks time.

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