31 July 2011

Wrocław's Bridges: 7. Sand Bridge

Most Piaskowy connects the city centre of Wrocław to Sand Island.

The present bridge replaced a timber span in 1861, and is of a broadly similar type to that which could have been built in timber. It was designed by Ernst Uber.

The bridge spans approximately 30m, and is in the form of two riveted steel lattice trusses, supporting a tramway and highway deck between them. Footways are cantilevered to the outer sides of the trusses.

The current, rather bold, paint scheme was applied in 2008 - before that, the bridge was brown in colour. I like it - it really draws attention to what would otherwise be a rather drab structure.

In common with other lattice trusses using steel angle sections in the web, an interesting pattern of light and shade is generated, varying depending on the time of day. This is more marked on bridges with a denser lattice, however.

I think the balustrades are visually at odds with the main girders, the little mini-lattice at their base notwithstanding, and it's a shame that a modern fairing has been added to the outer edge, which really looks out of place.

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