Wilkinson Eyre’s new Lille Langebro bridge serves Copenhagen’s cyclists
A new bridge has been unveiled in Copenhagen; Lille Langebro is the Danish capital’s latest connection in the Inner Harbour area, snaking gracefully across the water, linking opposite shores in the heart of town.
True to the city’s reputation as a cyclist’s heaven, the new bridge, by Wilkinson Eyre, was designed to serve bikes and pedestrians. Spanning 160m, Lille Langebro crosses the water from the OMA-designed BLOX building, and was commissioned by Realdania By & Byg (also the client behind BLOX).
Upon completion this summer, the bridge was gifted to the municipality of Copenhagen. Combining BLOX’s variety of outdoor areas, alongside leisure and educational spaces, the bridge will further enhance the area’s accessibility, positioning it as a key destination for the neighbourhood and wider Copenhagen.
The architects’ concept revolves around three key points, explains the team: ‘Firstly the bridge follows an elegant curve in plan which aligns with and evokes the great arc of ramparts and moat of Christianshavn, otherwise not apparent when viewed from the city. Secondly, the structure is arranged as two wings on the sides of the bridge defining a very acute edge, dividing light from shade. This edge dips below the decks at the abutments and soars up above the deck at midspan creating a further elegant line. Thirdly – and unexpectedly – the graceful curved profile of the bridge only becomes broken when the two swinging sections open for marine traffic.’
Wilkinson Eyre worked on the bridge’s elegant curves in collaboration with engineers Buro Happold. The steel structure, which splits into five spans, is also carefully lit to further enhance its lithe form. §