Lombardini 22 unveiled two new pedestrian and cycle bridges over Naviglio Grande. The bridges were conceived in the wider requalification plan for the towpaths of Naviglio Grande and Canale Villoresi; important segment of the green and blue colored ring made up of water, cycle paths and routes around the city down to the Ticino valley.
In this area so-called La Mesopotamia Milanese (because it’s enclosed by two canals) always been home to many creatives and artisans , the bridge is a great opportunity to create quality connections: in this case an architectonic and technical quality, besides urban quality, but above all the quality of the experience.
The Navigli canals were an infrastructure for fields irrigation, and a system for transporting goods and people until recent times when they started to represent an obstacle and a dividing element to the city road development.
The design is intentionally simple, almost neutral. Its lines are inspired by nature: a dragonfly, a water insect, and by the technical imaginary of a speed boat; also the technical quality of the 19th century iron bridge inspired us.
The bridge is not only a path to pass but a place to rest and to observe. Sections are slim thanks to the use of iron; light, transparent balustrades minimize its visual impact.
From a structural point of view it’s a trapezoidal section truss that lies on two pillars on which are fixed at regular intervals ribbed supports of the deck.
Longitudinally the beam has a maximum gradient of 8 %, raised to 2.5 mt from level of the banks. Four struts converging in three points each , never vertical, constitute perfectly braced attacks on the ground. Two single ramp metal ladders at the opposed sides and two open lifting platforms allow a full and independent fruition.
Lighting is architectural: linear light to highlight evenly structural design; oblique lighting to highlight the pedestrian path; recessed floor light to give accent; all the lighting systems adopted are Led: programmable, to minimize energy consumption and maintenance.
On the ground, the pedestrian platforms paving (granite of Montorfano and porphyry of Valcamonica) and anchor plates paving ( in concrete with aggregates in view as to represent the plinth supporting the bridge itself) create a new system that it’s also an opportunity to rethink in a wider way the road level: integrating public transport stops, occupying part of the road up to a proper distance from the tram tracks and creating protected areas from traffic as small oasis for pedestrians.
A complete repeatable object, adaptable not only to these two specific cases but also for future intersections: the idea is that of a flexible system , able to fit into different contexts.