Missing Link: Bridging The Danube River. Vienna.

On 8. Juli 2012 by Daniel Grünkranz

The project suggests a multifunctional network of bridges built over the river Danube in the city of Vienna. It deals with a historical grown border situation within the city area caused by the growth of the city beyond the river. In the late 20th century, the area between Neue Donau and Alte Donau (two branches of the river) took on an important role in Vienna’s urban renewal. It developed into a fast growing building site, now known as Danube City. But still, besides the necessary link of traffic infrastructure and public transportation, little is done to connect the sides left and right of the river in terms of ideology, city planning, and architecture.

The city of Vienna follows a strategy of extending public transportation, and the subway has a decisive role in it. The subway became an important instrument targeting at the renewal of urban quarters and to connect suburban areas with the city center. One major project in expanding the subway network was actually the continuation of the subway line U2 towards the east of the city. Thereby, the subway crosses the river and connects the proximate river banks with a bridge and stations on both sides. The idea for the Missing Link project was first conceived following the question concerning the possible role of the subway and its stations next to the river for the development of the area close by. In further consequence, the function of the bridge was questioned. Is it just a connection across the river? Does it just perform as traffic line while the urban fabric and situations of urban life are ending at the bridgeheads? Or can a bridge – or a bridge network – rather develop a manifold of functions, establish multilayered connections and make the inhabitation of the bridge possible? The purpose of such a network would not just be the constituting of connections but also the continuation of the urban fabric and its facilities.

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