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Renzo Piano unveils design for replacement Genoa bridge


Renzo Piano has unveiled designs for a €200 million replacement bridge in his hometown of Genoa after the previous structure collapsed killing 43 people

The Italian architect, who designed the new crossing pro-bono after the disaster in the northern port city, was officially appointed this week by the consortium of Italian contractors which won the rebuild contract.

A central section of the Polcevera viaduct, known locally as the Morandi bridge, collapsed in August in a storm, crushing cars and buildings underneath. 

In a statement, Piano said it would be a ‘great honour’ to contribute the design to his city and said the bridge would be ‘beautiful’, adding: ‘Building is always a gesture of solidarity, and I am sure it will also be a reason for pride.’

The new bridge will be illuminated by 43 lamps placed at intervals – one for each victim of the tragedy – and will have ‘elements of a boat’ in its design to reflect the city’s maritime history.

According to Italian media reports, Piano showed sketches to Genoa officials showing the road sitting on pillars which resembled the prow of a ship.

Speaking in The Observer in August, Piano said that he felt it was his mission to be involved after the tragedy.

‘It must be a place where people can recognise the tragedy in some way, while also providing a great entrance to the city,’ he said. ‘All this must be done without any sign of rhetoric – that would be the worst trap.

‘But I think we will stay away [from that] and instead try to express real pride and values. That is what Genoa deserves.’

The contractor said it was aiming to complete the new structure in 12 months.


Readers' comments (2)

  • This really is grotesque and offensive...
    Who was the bridge engineer? It surely was not Piano, who, as i recall, is an architect...
    Give credit to the engineer !

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  • It displays the simplicity of Renzo Piano at his best, but would it be so pure and simple in execution? My recollection of the images of the Morandi bridge were of a structure over buildings not a park?

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