German Bridge Construction Prize for 2012: Six bridges among final contenders
Architectural structures near Weimar and Wesel, in Havelberg and Gelsenkirchen, and in Flöha near Euskirchen, are regarded as some of the country’s most beautiful new bridges.
In 2012 the Federal Chamber of Engineers (BIngK) and the Association of Consulting Engineers (VBI) will present the prestigious German Bridge Construction Prize for the fourth time. Out of a total of 37 submitted entries, a jury of renowned bridge construction experts chose to nominate three respective architectural structures from each of the categories “Road and Rail Bridges” and “Foot and Bicycle Bridges”, as announced by the awarding bodies today.
Nominated in the “Road and Rail Bridges” category are:
“The bridge over the Scherkonde valley in the Weimarer Land is an outstanding innovation in railway bridge construction. The 576.5 m long architectural structure was built as part of the new rail route connecting Erfurt-Leipzig-Halle, and is the first semi-integral bridge for the high-speed rail link. The almost seamless and bed-free design provides a low-maintenance, aesthetically convincing architectural structure”, decided the jury.
“The bridge over the Rhine at Wesel is the fitting solution for this location”, the jury found. “Here, through meticulous planning, the analysis of a classic challenge was optimal, and the perfect engineering solution was found. The asymmetric cable-stayed bridge and its towering 130 m pylon, visible from afar, were consistently designed in accordance with the flow of forces.”
Sandauer bridge in Havelberg
The shallow tied-arch of the Sandauer bridge connects the island town of Havelberg to the surrounding countryside with understated elegance. The jury’s verdict: “By harmoniously integrating itself into the historical townscape, the bridge makes a convincing impression – in its totality as well as in a multitude of successful details.”
The nominees in the “Foot and Bicycle Bridges” category:
Foot and bicycle bridge over the Rhein-Herne canal
“The unilaterally suspended, integral suspension bridge spans the Rhine-Herne Canal in a wide arc. The boldly sweeping profile of the seemingly weightless architectural structure makes an aesthetically demanding contribution to the functionality of the road network in the Emscher Landschaftspark.”
Blue Wave, Flöha
“The S-shaped course above main road 173 and the tracks of the Erzgebirge railway elegantly solves the difficulty in linking the town to a sports and recreation area adjacent to the railway station area. Due to its flowing appearance and its colour, the bridge has been nicknamed the “Blue Wave””.
Victor Neels bridge over the Urftsee lake in the Eifel National Park
“The asymmetric suspension bridge spans the Urftsee lake without supports, and with admirable lightness and a minimum of material. It was prudently and innovatively built in terms of sustainability and the environmental and economic circumstances”, decided the jury.
The German Bridge Construction Prize honours not only the architectural structures themselves, but also the engineers whose work was key to the conception of the victorious bridges. The winners are announced at the award ceremony, but remain a strictly-guarded secret of the jurors until then. On 12 March 2012 the exciting award ceremony for the “German Bridge Construction Prize for 2012” will take place in Dresden. Approximately 1,300 guests are expected by the BIngK and VBI.
The German Federal Ministry for Transport, Construction and Urban Development once again supports and promotes the prize as patron within the framework of the Building Culture initiative. Deutsche Bahn AG is once more the main sponsor.
Bridges connect – and are an indispensable part of the architectural heritage. The six nominated bridges combine aesthetics and constructive creativity in an exemplary manner. Once again this year, the German Bridge Construction Prize shows the significant contribution that engineers make to building culture in Germany.
The prize for honouring outstanding engineering performance was launched in 2006 and has been awarded every two years since then.
For more information, please contact the awarding bodies.