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25. July 2011

A Gleaming Helix in the Centre of Madrid’s Green Lung

The Pasarela del Arganzuela

Madrid is on the threshold of heaven. This is what the inhabitants of the Spanish capital say when describing their city so rich in culture, art and atmosphere. The completion of one of the largest construction projects in Madrid’s history underlines henceforth the heavenly reputation of this metropolis. Liberated from the noise and smell of the busy city highway, which was completely banished under ground, both banks of the Rio Manzanares were transformed into picturesque parks and promenades. The heart of this green idyll is the Pasarela del Arganzuela – a footbridge designed by France’s star architect Dominique Perrault. The tapering conical forms on both sides of the bridge, wrapped in stainless steel Escale mesh manufactured by the internationally leading technical weaver GKD – Gebr. Kufferath AG create a shimmering helix. The metal mesh surrounds the bridge from end to end in a spiral design like a textile ribbon. This helix, which gleams silver in the sunlight, is a metaphor for the increasingly close association between the two parts of the city separated by the Manzanares. At night, it is transformed by backlighting into a golden spiral, floating mysteriously above the river.

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