Architecture done right

October 11, 2007

 Jos had such an endearing and quaint blog post the other day.  He was proud of the new library at his university, and thought spending a few extra million sexifying it up was worth it.

Well Jos, leave the visionary cutting-edge imagineering to the City of Minneapolis.  They just unveiled the design for our new bridge this week.  Behold, in all its glory:

Hell yeah!

Ask yourself: If you had a spouse, family member or friend die in the bridge collapse…wouldn’t you have tears in your eyes right now staring at this befitting memorial?  It’s more beautiful than a rainbow ending at the Mona Lisa with two kittens sleeping on the frame.  And all for only $400 million.  Well, this model might be extra –  not included in the cost.  Right now the designers of the Sydney Harbour Bridge are trembling with jealousy.  The maintainers of the London Tower Bridge are drinking their sorrows away and the architect for the Alamillo Bridge is going back to community college to rethink his career.  Our new bridge will end up costing about the same as the Millau Viaduct in France, which is only 2,500 meters long.  Take that Frenchies!

“It is a modern concrete bridge for the future, a bridge of its time,” said Linda Figg, whose company, Figg Engineering of Florida, is the designer with the Flatiron team.



15 Responses to “Architecture done right”

  1. Lchatburn Says:

    Wow… what is it with architects and concrete?

    “Isn’t it wonderful? Isn’t it beautiful?”

    No, it’s the most boring material known to man. Ugly brown/grey monotone only separated by where it stains like someone has taken a piss down it.

    Then take a boring material and make a really boring shape from it. Brilliant!


  2. Pedro Carvalho Says:

    are u being sarcastic? i’m having doubts.
    although the comparison made me lol real loud 😀

  3. ruurd Says:

    Come on. It’s a frigging bridge. They collapse. People die. If you want to make a point, go tell your politicians to fix all the other ‘bridges’ that need fixing before burning money on ‘sexying up’ a bridge.

  4. Allan Says:

    All concept drawings look great. That bridge is nothing special. A very simple and common design. Probably preferable to anything fancy and untested.

  5. yad Says:

    ruurd: Come on. It’s a frigging blogpost. Wade has a point, for that kind of money one should be able to come up with something less utilitarian.

    Trivia alert:
    The bridge at Millau was constructed in three years time!

  6. DanaKil Says:

    IMHO spending billions on something like that is nothing to be proud of…

  7. jospoortvliet Says:

    Besides, it’s nothing really special. I mean, compare it to the ‘swan’ in Rotterdam:

    Or where you being sarcastic? It’s sometimes hard to know with you 😉

  8. Bret Says:

    Yes he is being sarcastic. That is one plain looking bridge for an outrageous amount of money.

    Funny, I live near you in MPLS Wade, I know exactly how you feel.

  9. yad Says:

    Danakil wrote:
    “IMHO spending billions on something like that is nothing to be proud of…”

    Billions? What are you talking about? Perhaps you converted to birr (x9) or nakfa (x15) ?

  10. stripe4 Says:

    Meh, that’s nothing compared to South Bridge that is being constructed in Riga, capital city of Latvia.
    Due to the high inflation in the last three years, loan interest, some people’s personal interests and other factors the estimated total cost of the construction (all three phases) right now exceeds 1 billion USD (it was a lot less when the construction works had not started).
    And the bridge itself IMHO is nothing spectacular.

  11. Baumranger Says:

    Even though I kind of like this picture and the bring will probably look quite good but to compare the Tower Bridge with a “modern art” bridge is not just poor it’s lousy.

  12. DR Says:

    Whats the point of putting all that effort into building a bridge when it is just going to fall down again?

  13. a Frenchie Says:

    Well, it’s not much the length of the Millau bridge which is impressive but its height (around 350m for the highest pillar).
    If you want to see a long bridge, have a look at

  14. wadejolson Says:

    Man, there are some funny comments on this thread. Thanks to everybody for writing in.

    If we had decided on an inexpensive utilitarian bridge, the fiscal conservative in me would have been fine. If they wanted to make some statement and have a signature bridge so grief counselors could help our hearts heal in remembrance, I’d be fine with that too. But for such a high price tag to get so little…

    stripe4: I’m glad that Riga is showing world-class initiative for civil engineering debacles.

    Baumranger: It’s not comparing different architectural stylings with clearly different’s the simple stance that a $400 million bridge 200 meters long should not look like a 30-minute autocad sketch.

    If the public is ok with that price tag, one would expect a signature bridge.

    A Frenchie: Best name ever! I actually looked at that page when thinking about different bridges. I first saw it when the TdF crossed it some time ago – it’s really something.

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