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Pedestrian and bicycle bridge in Lillestrøm, Norway

Gottlieb Paludan Architects has developed a design proposal for a pedestrian and cycle bridge over Skjærvagapet, a bay in the Nitelva River that runs through Lillestrøm in Norway. The proposal received an honourable mention in an open design competition in September 2021.

An overall urban development strategy will strengthen the connection between the two Norwegian towns of Strømmen and Lillestrøm, which are located on opposite sides of Skjærvagapet. The strategy focuses in particular on green mobility, including safe and efficient pedestrian and bicycle connections. Lillestrøm Municipality, therefore, wants a new pedestrian and cycle bridge that will function as a landmark for the area and an important aesthetic and practical connection between the development that is taking place on each side of the bay.

The design proposal is based on the bridge creating the best possible connection with the surroundings and the access roads, while at the same time giving the bridge a sculptural and visual quality of a landmark. The design is not dominant or intervening in the landscape but is elegant and simple while a dynamic expression is added to the structure through the soft S-shape.

The bridge is designed as a steel box girder over three spans with integral piers and varying cross-sectional height.  The bridge crosses Skjærvagapet in a 66 m long main span with asymmetrical side spans of 18 and 32 m respectively. Increased cross-sectional height above the integral V-shaped steel piers ensures structural robustness whilts the reduction of cross-sectional height toward centre of the main span and abutments induces visual dynamic. Structural logic and visual sobriety come together in one integrated design. This, in conjunction with the curvature of the bridge in plan, gives an undulating visual appearance that matches the location of the bridge over the river. 

The bridge is aligned along a constant radius of 50 meters, which ensures optimum conditions for cyclists and pedestrians in terms of visibility and comfort. Furthermore, it ensures precise fabrication: the combination of a uniformly inclined steel box soffit with a constant radius prevents the steel surfaces from warping.

Modern lighting technology is used throughout, with LED as light source and a control system that ensures that light levels and temperatures can be adjusted. The lighting contributes to the safety of the bridge and is shielded so that lighting equipment is integrated with the bridge architecture and contributes to good lighting spaces, both on the bridge and from a distance.

The project was developed in collaboration with AFRY Ark Studio, EFLA Consulting Engineers and Light Bureau. The design proposal received an honourable mention for its simple and elegant expression, which "stands out among the competition proposals with its sleek design and dynamic character".

visualizations: Gottlieb Paludan Architects 



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