Design Competition for a Commemorative Bridge at the INWMG, Islandbridge, Dublin.
The collective imagery of the First World War is characterized by the images of a war fought in the muddy trenches, with tanks and metallic warheads, steel fences and barbed wire.
The design idea and the project`s concept wants to be symbolically linked to these images and to create a figurative reference of historical significance with an innovative and memorable interpretation and design.
The bridge design refers to the trenches with muddy walls, where the soldiers sheltered for safety.
This is represented by two solid walls running parallel and clad in weathered steel, which also chromatically refers to the colour of mud and ground and achieves the sculptural form of the proposed design. The boundaries also take inspiration from the rough fences erected for protection during the war, also in weathered steel; they provide a strong sense of enclosure and protection of the plaza.
The choice of the materials also symbolically refers to the rusted metal that comes to mind when one thinks of the First World War. The chromatic palette then follows with a second element used for the paving and the stone cladding, which is a flame finish brown granite stone.
We believe that architecture and beauty come from the careful coordination of three, maximum four, selected elements, materials and colours.
This is how this project has also been approached. Weathering steel and brown granite are the only materials used, which successfully complement the green landscape of the surroundings.
The natural language of the site is portrayed by long prospective horizontal lines: For example, the Lutyens axis, the river flow and banks, the weir edge, the south bank pathway and the parallel field, the boundaries to the north banks. The design of the bridge, in its bare form, wants to reflect and relate to this language of lines.
The new bridge is restrained by the greenery of the surrounding landscape and the black water of the river. The architecture is designed to be a backdrop to these elements and the INWMG, not competing but simply becoming the setting.
Architect: Flavio Lombardo Architects
Structural and Civil Engineer: Doherty Finegan Kelly
Quantity Surveyors: Boylan Chartered Quantity Surveyors