The undulations of NEXT Architects Dafne Schippers bike bridge conveys cyclists over the Amsterdam Rhine Canal to glide over the roof of a local school and descend down through the treetops of a local park. This is one piece of infrastructure that definitely creates a sense of ceremony.
However, the path is not a folly, but rather a response to an intricate urban fabric that requires careful dual land use in order to provide connection at a critical point for the cycleway network, linking the historical city of Utrecht to the newly developed residential area Leidsche Rijn.
As such the bridge is expected to see 7000 daily visitors, and will be officially opened today in a ceremony led by the lady herself, an athlete famous as 200 metre world champion who went to school in Leidsche Rijn, and whose name was publicly voted to appear on the bridge.
The fruit of an intensely collaborative process, the bridge acts as a roof over a new section of the Montessori school, creating a single unified flowing form that encompasss school, ramp, bridge and park. A 25 million euro project, it also incorporates a row of 15 new homes.