The German Bridge Construction Prize – ideas and issues
Bridges connect people and markets. They are an expression of the creativity and innovative strength of civil engineers. This is no mystery in the professional world, but the general public knows little about the contribution that engineers make to architectural heritage. The German Bridge Construction Prize wants to change this.
Successful bridges are imbued with a harmonious balance of beauty, responsible coexistence with the environment and setting, cost-effectiveness and technical functionality. Consequently, bridge building is regarded as the supreme discipline of structural engineering. Celebrating its mostly unknown stars and their accomplishments – namely the most beautiful and innovative bridge designs – is the objective of the German Bridge Construction Prize.
It was jointly launched by the Federal Chamber of Engineers (BIngK) and the Association of Consulting Engineers (VBI) in 2006, and very quickly became the most famous engineering award in Germany.
In the meantime the German Bridge Construction Prize has been awarded five times. Each of the festive awards ceremonies, held on the eve of the Dresden bridge-building symposium, has been attended by well over a thousand engineers and renowned individuals from the political and business sectors.
The special atmosphere of this celebration of engineering skill and artistry is to no small extent a result of the tense anticipation of the invited finalists of the competition. Next year too, the jury’s vote will remain top secret until the awards ceremony. Only on the evening of the award ceremony, when the red envelopes with the jury’s respective decisions are opened, will competitors and the public find out who has won the 2016 German Bridge Construction Prize.
Previous award winners
The German Bridge Construction Prize is awarded in the categories “Road and Rail Bridges” and “Foot and Bicycle Bridges”. One architectural structure per category is honoured as prize winner. Unlike many architectural awards, there are no further prize levels, extra awards, or special honours. This is what makes the German Bridge Construction Prize uniquely special.