Footway and bicycle bridge in Maribor, SI, competition, 2010
The bridges have always had an important role for Maribor city while leaving indelible mark on its skyline. Nowadays many bridges manifest their structural characteristics, but the potential for the multifunctional use is lost. Often they are designed only as an functional element for overpassing the barrier and the opportunity for integration into social pattern of the city is limited. Bridges are mostly seen as public relics, but they are public spaces as well. Main bridge of the Maribor is the most appreciated public space during the fireworks over the Drava river. Therefore we propose to use the new bridge as an extension of the public waterfront and its activities. The shape of the plan is a direct copy of the longitudinal section of the Main bridge, providing interaction between new bridge and Main bridge on a symbolic level.
The new bridge is designed as a recognizable urban feature, complementing the network of open public spaces at the river. It provides a straight connection between both embankments as well as various public spaces - creative pockets. Spontaneous and organized activities can take place on the bridge and both ends. People can stop and enjoy the views on water or take part in different social activities. The connections at the both ends of the bridge widen towards embankments and provide more integrated and easy access. The transparent railing on the west side gives a good overview over the Drava river and city. The closed railing on the east side gives a solid background while standing on bridge and is the main load bearing beam at the same time. The old pylon on Lent side is incorporated within the pavement of the bridge and links the new bridge with history.