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Ponte della Musica bridge over the river Tiber in Rome

Country ITALY-Rome
Client Buro Happold Ltd, Londra (Preliminary and Final design) Comune di Roma (Supervision of Works)
Services provided Preliminary design; Final design;Supervision of Works;Safety coordination during the execution of the works
Period of execution 10/2003 - ongoing
Construction cost € 10,164,779.72
KEY FACTS / KEY DATA

Lenght = 190 m
Main span = 130 m
Width = 17.2 (min) - 20.7m (max)
Structural steel = 1400t
Gross structural weight = 3,400t



EXPLANATORY SUMMARY

The Ponte della Musica (“Bridge of Music”) is Rome’s newest bridge on the Tiber river and was inaugurated on the date of the city’s 2,764th anniversary, April 21, 2011. The new bridge allows to weld two zones of the northern expansion of the city full of architectural landmarks significant for the social and cultural life of the city:
- on one hand the Flaminio district, with sports facilities dating back to the 1960 Olympic Games among which stand Nervi’s Sports Hall (“Palazzetto dello Sport”) and the Flaminio Stadium, the new Parco della Musica designed by Renzo Piano and the recent project of the Center for XXI Century Arts (MAXXI), designed by Zaha Hadid,
- on the other hand the Victory district on the slopes of Monte Mario, with the Olympic Stadium, the “Foro Italico” sport complex, the House of Fencing by Luigi Moretti, the Youth Hostel, the Rai Auditorium.

THE PROJECT: CHALLENGES AND SOLUTIONS

Different forms have been sought for the structure – suspended, cable-stayed,… - but the arc has represented not only the most appropriate form for a pedestrian bridge but also the one able to easily achieve the great span required. In addition, inclined springing not only transfer the arch thrust to the foundations, but give the possibility to connect the banks - the lowest level - with the bridge deck.The structural and architectural study proceeded hand in hand, with the goal of having a strictly "truthful" structure , in which each architectural element is strictly functional to the structure, and each structural element finds its architectural expression.The structural analysis has taken into account among other things the aerodynamic aspects (with wind tunnel testing), and the dynamic aspects related to the pedestrian-induced vibrations.The Municipality of Rome has also required that the structure was designed for a possible future tram corridor on the bridge, both in terms of size and loading.The inclined arches create a natural enlargement of the deck at midspan, giving it the appearance of an urban open space - "a square" - between the two shores of the river.The open space of the deck, totally accessible for pedestrian use, is used for fairs, festivals, shows and street theater, becoming a "destination", a place where to stay and where to spend time. With its central location, it has created a new square along the “Axis of Music”, in between the Flaminio district and the Foro Italico.The design has also addressed the harmonization of the works with the different contexts that are encountered on either side of the river :- On the left side (near Piazza Gentile da Fabriano), a new "Square under the bridge" has been created. The new urban space , whose architectural design complements and enhances the relationship with the bridge, is a large area of over 3000 sqm, designed for events and shows and overlooking the scenery of the river. It has the shape of a theatre, capable of seating about 350, and a strong modern look, while maintaining explicit references, in the details the steps or the furnishings, to the materials typical of the city .- On the right bank , where the green area of the Capoprati park was preserved, a new square, whose most intimate character is enhanced by the use of cobblestones for paving, creates a vantage point and a stopping point along the bike path. A system of ramps and stairs connects the three levels corresponding to the road level, the riverside cycle and pedestrian path, and the lower bank of the Tiber.

MATERIALS

The bridge deck is a fully welded steel frame, white painted, of great beauty and lightness, reminiscent of the cover of the nearby Olympic Stadium. The materials used for landscaping are inspired by the architecture encountered on the surroundings of which the bridge is part: the retaining walls are made of red bricks and travertine, a very common type in Rome and an explicit quotation of the new Auditorium - Parco della Musica. The pedestrian and cycle paths along the deck are made with bangkirai wood, available from sustainable sources.

CONSTRUCTION

In order to safeguard the concept and scheme design and to ensure continuity, the design team was appointed to carry out the supervision of the works according to national regulations of the state of Italy. The works started on site in September 2008. The pile cap on the left bank comprises two overlapping slabs, free to move - by means of 27 sliding bearings - in order to allow movement on one of the sides of the bridge, thus releasing any horizontal stresses caused by temperature and live loads. The steelwork was fabricated by a specialist subcontractor during 2009, preassembled entirely in a fabrication yard, and erected on site during 2010. The steel structure was assembled without the use of temporary piers in the river bed to avoid any interference to the river hydrology during construction. The structure was supported by two temporary towers and a cable-stay system. The main segments (weighting up to 80 tonnes) were launched by a large crane and fully welded on site. The middle deck section was placed in September 2010, finally connecting the two banks of the river. The works included for the inclined piers and for the deck slab one of the first examples in Italy of concrete class C70/85 (Rck = 85 N/mm2). The laboratory tests recorded strengths exceeding 100 N/mm2. In addition to the requirements for supervision, the design team has been in charge of safeguarding the aesthetics and the quality of the bridge, supervising many aspects of the detailing of the structure and of the ancillary works.

SERVICES

  • Preliminary design
  • Final design
  • Supervision of Works
  • Safety coordination during the execution of the works


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