Habitable Bridge for Yaroslavl

Graham Thompson, UK 


Explanatory Note

Do we make the best use of the space beneath elevated roadways? We inevitably end up building bridges usually because we want to go over something that we don’t want the road to destroy. 

There are particular issues with having open/free space under bridges. Mainly the negative issues are:   1. anti-social behaviour   2. homeless shelter from the weather   3.rarely well kept   4. storage for road materials for maintenance to the vicinity   5. not inviting   6.usually surface parking which is unsightly. 

Habitable Bridge for Yaroslavl
Habitable Bridge for Yaroslavl

Questions to take effect for this competition entry: What can be done with this free/ open space?
Can this space be used for something more attractive?

Positive Aspect
The space beneath bridges does have some inherent value in that it is sheltered from the elements.

A bridge is a structure built to span physical obstacles such as a body of water, valley or road for the purpose of providing passage over the obstacle. There are many different designs that all serve unique purposes and apply to unique situations. Design of bridges vary depending on the function of the bridge, the nature of the terrain where the bridge is constructed and anchored, the material used to make it and the funds available to build it. 

What does the Habitable Bridge house? — Dual Carriageway Road connection needs to be maintained — multilevel footpaths — multi-leveled viewing platforms and pause points — connection of parkland on both sides of the bridge — cycle paths need to be incorporated — retail spaces — public covered outdoor multifunctional space

The proposed bridge is a public destination and a new area of interest. It will serve the area, and those who come as visitors. Public leisure activities inhabit the space inside the structure, thus creating space within space! 

Technical description 

Integrating microphonic food production into the bridge. By integrating algae technologies into and on the walls will provide shade for the building interior and produce a certain yield, giving the bridge a new identity.

The primary material for the bridge will be a variety of concretes. Steel will be the main material for all the other components such as the Entrance Pavilions and the canopies found though out the scheme. 


Graham Thompson 



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