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2010 – Spencer Dock Bridge, Dublin

Architect: Amanda Levete Architects

spencerdockbridge

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The 40 metre span bridge with its fluid lines and undulating concrete surface will take trams, traffic and pedestrians across the Royal Canal. The edges of the deck peel down to reveal a space for pedestrians to pause and take in views of the dock and Linear Park which is currently under construction. The underside of the bridge merges with the piers in a single movement with joint lines in the concrete designed to accentuate the geometry of the form. The finish of the concrete provides high visibility against the dark water of the canal and at night the structure will be vibrantly lit from below giving the bridge a significant presence.

As proportions of the bridge are unusual the office took this as an opportunity to consider the bridge as a piece of landscape design. The soft geometry and asymmetry of the design creates a piece of infrastructure that resolves the tension between form and function. The bridge is the centrepiece of the new extension to the light rail line in Dublin city centre and part of a larger regeneration project for the inner city and former docks.

Constructed using a combination of white insitu and precast reinforced concrete, all formwork is milled directly from 3D parametric models. This innovative use of CNC cut polystyrene is to date the largest application of the material to be used in this way. Commissioned as Future Systems, the bridge is one of the first major projects completed under the name of Amanda Levete Architects. The bridge will be fully operational in 2010 to coincide with completion of the Linear Park.