Water “At-traction” is the winning design concept of French practice bureau faceB within the International ideas competition “Archtriumph”, “Paris Bridge + Crossing” in 2012, an ingenious concept which can cross the Seine on either side of the Île de la Cité and offer pedestrians a new and unique perspective on Paris. Designed as one of the city’s major attractions, the new bridge in Paris is meant to be radically different from the previous and should be seen as a link through time and space, where people could stroll along the water and really feel this experience.
Photo © François Marcuz
As architect Camille Mourier said, the main objective in designing this project was to allow pedestrians get closer to the water and regain contact with the river as an out of time place, telling us stories and history and enjoy that authentic feeling. Unlike other bridges that make use of technics based on compression, this atypical one embraces the potential of traction as its stretched steel cables, strung between the banks by springs, generate a mesh on which concrete beads are threaded and create a surface that will quiver under the pressure of footsteps.
Thus, its amazing aesthetic reveals fluent “thin roadways” flirting with the water, that offer two different possibilities of crossing: first one is a typical route with direct access to the other side, while the other option, the “perilous” one reminiscent of Himalayan footbridges, seems more like a space for strolling, relaxing along the water. It’s like a waterfront, where you can sit and have a quick lunch while enjoying the proximity of the Seine. Have a look at the bridge plans below for a more detailed insight.
Photos © bureau faceB; source @archdaily.com
Competition: International ideas competition 2012, 1st prize winner
Project team: Camille Mourier (architecture), François Marcuz (architecture + design), Arnaud Malras (architecture), Germain Pluvinage (architecture), Arnaud Malras (engineer).