Work Begins On New Car-Free Thames Bridge In Wandsworth

Design team now starting on Nine Elms Pimlico Bridge commission

Work Begins On New Car-Free Thames Bridge In Wandsworth

A design team led by Denmark’s Bystrup Architecture Design and Engineering is now starting a programme of exploratory works for a new car-free bridge across the Thames at Nine Elms.

Bystrup, who will work with London Architects Robin Snell and Partners, engineer COWI, and consultants AECOM, have been commissioned by Wandsworth Council to design the Nine Elms Pimlico Bridge, which is set to be one of the first Thames crossings built specifically to meet the needs of both pedestrians and cyclists.

The team was selected following an international design competition and the first stage of work will involve examining the feasibility of the different location options for a new bridge along this part of the Thames, which is the longest stretch of riverside in central London without a crossing point. The team will share its findings once this work is complete.

A new bridge linking Nine Elms and Pimlico was first proposed back in 2003 by the Cross River Partnership to fill the long gap between Chelsea and Vauxhall Bridges. It is supported by the Mayor's London Plan, and Transport for London (TfL) has completed a feasibility study which concludes the scheme is viable and exceeds Government value for money thresholds.

£26 million for the project is being raised through private funding via the development of Nine Elms and, according to TfL’s feasibility study, the project would pay for itself twice over in terms of reduced journey times and other benefits.

Work Begins On New Car-Free Thames Bridge In Wandsworth

The outline design concept (pictured) developed by the Design Team could work at each of the different location options identified by TfL’s earlier study. The unique spiralling form of the concept design would provide sufficient clearance for large river boats to pass underneath without creating steps or steep slopes which inhibit movement. By minimising the need to build on the riverbanks, valuable space on each side of the river is preserved. The concept design includes innovative features such as textured surfaces and recessed lighting to safely guide pedestrians and cyclists along a shared surface.

Lead designer Erik Bystrup said, “Our design concept is based on an elegant bridge that provides simple and uninhibited access for all, with minimal impact on each bank. This will be one of the very first shared pedestrian and cycle bridges over the Thames, adding to the rich history of London’s river crossings.”


February 15, 2017