1st Prize Winner at International Design Competition. Kaunas, Lithuania - 2018
Pedestrian Bridge From Aleksotas to the
Island and from the Island to
Karaliaus Mindaugo Pr. in Kaunas over the River
Two bridges will introduce
new pedestrian and cycling routes between two Nemunas banks and the Nemunas
Island. The smaller bridge will connect the island with the Old Town and the
New Town; the main one – from the island to H. and O. Minkovskiu Street.
Additional public spaces will be created at the beginnings of both bridges –
the amphitheatre of the Nemunas Bridge with 360° panoramas and the Canal Bridge
Park entrance square. The levels of both bridges over the water will not
interfere with ship passage and common aesthetic of the bridges will be united
by their silhouette.
The bridges and their
composition of accesses will create convenient connections between river banks
and island. They will also form organic local connections and create public
spaces at the bridge foundations and the river.
The Canal Bridge is the bank
extension that will create a public square towards the island. The park access
is from the Firefighters' Palace side, which will evenly become narrow at the
beginning of the bridge on the park side.
The foundations of the
Nemunas Bridge will be finished with amphitheatres – an open public space for
sitting with panoramic views and access to water activities.
The silhouette of the
wireframe structure of the Nemunas Bridge will form a flat arch. As a result,
the endings of the bridge will evenly integrate into the shapes of the river
banks. The middle of the bridge will provide the optimal dimensions for the
river passage. Due to its arch character and wireframe trusses, the Nemunas
Bridge will have a minimal impact on panoramas from close and distant angles.
It will become an icon of the city, which will emphasise the former port city's
The bridge will unite the
Firefighters crossroad - the intersection of Old Town and New Town, the Nemunas
Island Park and the bank of Aleksotas.
The development of design of
the bridges was lead by simple ideas. Their aim is to minimally express the
pedestrian-cycle connection between the riverbanks and to expand it with
panoramic public spaces. The center of the bridge is visually minimal – the
foundations are formed and adapted to the local context. The composition begins
with archetypical middle of the bridge, giving a specific character to its
accesses. The line transforms in relation to the environment and extends to
create a public space connecting the lower and upper terraces on the
riverbanks. Transit trajectory at the junction will turn into a meeting point
with 360° views of the city. For this purpose, the formed silhouette of a flat
arch will allow to obtain the minimum passage in the river and develop the construction
foundations, creating panoramic public spaces for locals to gather by the
water. The design of the bridges is modest with modern technical details and
tectonic wireframe silhouette, which reveals the structure of the construction.
The style of the truss construction correlates to the cityscape of the former
port and bridges on this section of the river.
Until the 20th century,
Nemunas Island was an unurbanised natural formation with changeable shape of
the island in shallow parts of the river. A port peninsula with railway and
port infrastructure, The Winter Port, was established here in 1917. In 1974 the
port was gradually extended into a park. It radically changed the coastline and
abandoned the peninsula including port area that transformed into the current
channel. Construction of important public buildings on the island began in the
The light wireframe
construction of the Nemunas Bridge will be an iconic public space integrated
into the Old Town neighborhood. The main bridge will resemble the character of
the Nemunas Island port and the former truss bridges in the centre of Kaunas.
This way, the new connection will reinforce the identity of the city and will
give a new shape to the public space near the water. It will open up new views
and remind of the former historical port city in the Nemunas waters.
Architects KILD: Authors: Dominykas Daunys, Petras Išora, Ivane Ksnelashvili Architect: Ona Lozuraitytė