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Pedestrian Bridge in Boudry

Spanning the River Areuse in Switzerland, the bridge leads from a steeply rising bank on one side to a large open space on the other. The different situations at the two ends are re-flected in the cross-sectional dimensions of the bridge, which increase along its length – agesture that is accentuated by its sinuous form on plan. The dynamic formal language and the simple means of construction reveal a self-confident, yet respectful, approach to the surroundings. Proceeding along the bridge, one experiences a play of light through the open wood strips and steel sections, so that the enclosing structure never seems constricting. Despite its simple details and the use of only a few materials, the bridge has a relatively complex structure. The load-bearing system consists of a box girder dissolved into a series of linear members. All four sides of this structure combine in transmitting the bending and torsion loads to the ground. Theindividual steel frames are connected by diagonal compression and tension members. The filigree overall impression is heightened by the diagonal struts fixed on the inside. These are scarcely visible externally, so that the complex structural system is not immediately legible. In view of the difficult access to the site, three prefabricated elements were delivered by helicopter, provisionally secured, and welded in position. Finally, the wood boarding was fixed to the steel structure.

This article is taken out of the following magazine:
DETAIL 6/2003

Simple Forms of Building

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