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French architect wins Bath bridge contest

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French architect and engineer Marc Mimram has seen off the likes of Amanda Levete and Grimshaw to win the contest for a new £2.5 million crossing over the River Avon in central Bath

Called Between History and Modernity, the scheme has been designed with London-based engineers Webb Yates and will link Green Park Road on the north side of the river to the Newark Works buildings on the south.

It is understood Levete’s practice AL_A came second in the Bath & North East Somerset Council backed contest followed by: Flint & Neill with Moxon Architects; Grimshaw with Buro Happold; Heneghan Peng with Ove Arup; and Price & Myers with McDowell & Benedetti.

Mimram’s ‘playful’ design, which was shown as part of an exhibition in September, was also the public’s choice.

The judges were impressed with ‘the sensitivity of the design’ and ‘by the unusual and elegant curvature and undulations of the deck’.

The finalists in full [in order]

  • Marc Mimram/Webb Yates
  • AL_A/AFA Consult
  • Flint & Neill/Moxon Architects
  • Grimshaw/Buro Happold
  • Heneghan Peng/Ove Arup
  • Price & Myers/McDowell & Benedetti

Marc Mimram, founding director of Marc Mimram Architects and Engineers, said: ‘I’ve built bridges all over the world but it has long been my ambition to build in the UK and I’m excited to be doing so in Bath. The city’s history and relationship with the River Avon has captivated me since my first visit and it was this that inspired our design for the bridge.

He added: ‘Bridges have the capacity to transform cities, to build not just physical ties between locations, but symbolic bonds within communities. While being firmly rooted in Bath’s history and landscape this bridge connects Bath’s two new business districts and allows the city to look forwards towards future growth and transformation.’

The authority intends to submit a planning application for the new bridge next year (2016) and hopes to begin construction in 2017.

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Readers' comments (1)

  • Thanks god for once the best design wins a bridge design competition!
    Chapeau bas Marc and team.
    Judging by the rest of the entries maybe the short list was a bit misguided...

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