Landgangen (the Gangway) in the city of Esbjerg on the Danish west coast is 280 meters of pedestrian bridge and 220 meters of promenade connecting the historic center of Esbjerg with the harbour. The structure shortens the distance by one third by foot and bridges heavy and dangerous intersections to create a new perceived proximity between city and water. Wedged in between these two areas is the city park – a wooded landscape of steep hills and valleys. Landgangen acts as a unifying element between three different contexts: City, industry and landscape. The bridge branches out as a superimposed light hovering structure that finds its way, twisting and turning, from the city to the harbour in an unpredictable rhythm and creates new vantage points, plateaus, stairs and connecting pathways. The light structure has a minimal impact on the green surfaces and mature trees, leaving the precious piece of urban nature and source of biodiversity untouched.
As Esbjerg has grown, the city and the harbour have begun to turn their backs on one another. However, as in many other Danish harbour cities, the relationship between water and city is changing, from industry to residential urban development. These cities all share a common challenge of bridging heavy infrastructure formerly serving the industry and reconnecting the historic city centers with the obvious qualities of the waterfront.
Creating safe and attractive soft mobility alternatives to car traffic is a key condition for sustainable, resilient and walkable neighborhoods.
The bridge is superimposed as a light hovering structure that finds its way, twisting and turning, from the city to the harbour in an unpredictable rhythm that branches out into vantage points, plateaus, stairs and connecting pathways, leaving green surfaces and mature trees untouched.
The bridge winds its way through the tree crowns of the city park. The expressive topography and the many beautiful beech trees are maintained in the project, as the bridge gently bends to move in and around the landscape.
Originally built for infrastructure, the bridge has become a meeting point in the city.
The soft curves of the bridge are tailored to the speed and movements of the many bicyclists crossing it daily.
Landgangen offers spectacular views and quiet places for withdrawal and contemplation, creating places to de-stress in an urban setting. The many new vantage points provide new perspectives of the harbour and sea.
The park’s historical layers with the water tower and the bunkers from World War II are revealed through the many vantage points, which also contain information on local history.
As seasons change, so does the nature of the bridge. In the summer time the bridge is an element of contrast in the park, and in autumn it disappears among the red and yellow leaves.
Landgangen is the bridge between harbour and city. The Corten steel inscribes itself in the area’s expression, linking the raw harbour environment with the red bricks of Esbjerg’s city center.
source: Office web