Three New Bridges For Huashan

Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava is on the way to establish his very first set of sculptural bridges in China. Three vehicular and pedestrian bridges will be constructed in Huashan over the Yangtze river canal, spacing between 1.5 kilometers. The new development initiatives are going to be accelerated by centralizing these architect-designed landmarks, as believed, will also spread throughout Wuhan, the capital of Hubei situated 20 kilometers east to Huashan.

“It gives me great personal satisfaction and represents a grand challenge that I face with great enthusiasm to help develop this ambitious project that enables me to design my first bridges in the Far East”, Calatrava comments on this project. The trio of modernized aqueduct consists of Xianbi bridge at the center, Lincong bridge at the east and Xihu bridge at the west. All the bridges facilitate vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians through carefully integrated routes and multiple series of stairs and ramps.

Xianbi Bridge. Courtesy of Santiago Calatrava

Xianbi Bridge. Courtesy of Santiago Calatrava

A couple of outwardly inclined arches compose the 118 meters long Lincong bridge, achieving a height of 26.1 meters at the tip. The 129 meters long Xianbi bridge forms a characteristic void by its two-way traffic system while encircling the water at the middle. The arches of the bridge rise up to 42.3 meters on a centrally supported structural system. Xihu bridge spreads linearly across 102.7 meters where the platform and the 20.4 meters high single arch gets connected via a group of inclined corrugated cables. All the bridges incorporate pedestrian stairs to cross the channel directly from a lower level.

Xianbi Bridge. Courtesy of Santiago Calatrava

Xianbi Bridge. Courtesy of Santiago Calatrava

The plaza underneath accommodates access points between the road and the promenade pathways while sequentially creating links to a shopping avenue residing on the northern bank. The unique lighting concept and autochthonous landscape design create a mesmerizing haven for local and foreign trippers. As a reflection of urban ambitions for Wuhan authority, the project will start getting materialized in later 2016.

“Architecture is one of the art forms best able to improve and revitalize cities both artistically and functionally”, said Calatrava. “The Huashan project is a clear example of how an urban element, a key to the successful growth of the city, can at the same time improve the quality of life for its citizens, thanks to an integration of all three bridges and the creation of boulevards on the banks of the canal”.

Licong Bridge. Courtesy of Santiago Calatrava

Licong Bridge. Courtesy of Santiago Calatrava

Project Information:

Architect: Santiago Calatrava Architects and Engineers
Location: Huashan, East of Wuhan, China
Project Year: To be started late 2016
Client: Authority of Wuhan, China

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