New Danube Bridge
International Competition, Budapest
The New Danube Bridge will be situated on the new road connection between Ujbuda district and Csepel Island spanning the 420 m wide river bed.
Budapest bridges are important parts of the city panorama and they characterise Budapest on the same level as The Parliament and other landmark buildings. Even though they differ in structural concept, they represent a unique family of three bridges in the city with a continuous upper chord connecting Buda and Pest. The new bridge aims to continue this heritage not only in structural setup but with modest elegance and light, dynamic character, as a contemporary translation of the essence of bridges of Budapest. The self-anchored suspension bridge with one 80m tall central pylon represents the evolution and expansion of the idea of Chain, Elizabeth and Liberty Bridges at a new location in an entirely new, up-to date and unique manner.
The presence of the bridge is a result of careful and extensive analysis to determine the right structure and form for this particular location where the landscape changes as the Danube bends, leaves the hills of the city, gets wider and less intimate. The asymmetry of the structure resonates with the different character of the natural island shore and the dense urban area on the Buda side. The position of the pylon creates strong visual connection with the nearby Kopaszi Gát park and leaves the outer curve of the river undisturbed.
The existing rich natural waterside and the large green areas on Csepel island provide a unique oportunity to foster the intimate connection between the river and the new urban fabric. Beside the main function of the new bridge to provide excellent traffic solutions, the bridge should be a perfect tool to enhance this relation with creating a strong bond on a human scale between the two landscaped riverside promenades. In this way a continuous green belt can be established between Buda and tip of Csepel Island along the Southern part of the river.
Beyond the general appearance, the architectural solutions of the bridge strongly focus on human interaction. The aim is to create interesting, ever-changing spatial relations between the structure, the river and the moving people, thus evoke emotions and provide a unique personal experience of the crossing. It is equally important to form the immediate surroundings of the bridge into high quality spaces organically attached to the area’s urban developments, especially along the river towards Kopaszi Gát and the northern Csepel park area. The split superstructure provides a light space at the foot of the bridge. As part of the riverbank promenade on Buda the approach bridge serves as a lively multifunctional square becoming an organic part of the urban context and serving the social integration and sustainability of the bridge.
The 4.5 m high separated twin orthotropic steel hollow box decks strengthened with cross girders are linked to the main suspension cable by vertical hangers. With 8 m wide opening between the left and right superstructure, the bridge becomes lighter and does not close the space underneath, which is especially important on the Buda side where the bridge continues with the architecturally designed 5-span approach bridge, consisting of reinforced concrete portal frames with a slender post-tensioned reinforced concrete slab. The total system length of the approach bridge structure is 30.0 + 45.5 + 2 x 38.0 + 33.0 = 184.50 m. The total system length of the approach and main bridge is 184.5 + 5.0 + 564.0 = 753.5 m.