The Invisible Bridge of RO&AD Architects

published in: Architecture By Ricardo Hernandez, 28 November 2011

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photo © RO & AD Architects

Project Name: Moses Bridge
Architects: 
RO&AD architecten

Contributing architects: Ro Koster, Ad Kil, Martin van Overveld
Structural Engineer : Adviesbureau, Lüning
 Doetinchem, 
The Netherlands


Contractor:
 AVK-bv
, Oude Tonge, 
The Netherlands
Client:
 Municipality of Bergen op Zoom
Location: 
Halsteren, Municipality of Bergen op Zoom
, The Netherlands
Used Materials: 
Accoya Wood, 
Angelim Vermelho
Total area: 50m2

photo © RO & AD Architects

People often attempt the improbable of walking on water. We have often walked underwater in a pool or ocean, but to walk below water without getting wet or wearing a diving suit was nearly impossible until now. Designed by RO&AD Architects of the Netherlands and Belgium, this pedestrian bridge is an access route to the Fort de Roovere, part of the 17th century defense structures. The concept and execution is so unique that from afar, it is really non-existent. All that you see is a marked line in the landscape but it appears flat and it doesn't interrupt the views of the area. Only when looking and standing parallel to it, can you experience the depth and unique experience of walking under water, all without a drop of water on your clothing.

The ''Moses bridge'' located in 
Halsteren, Municipality of Bergen op Zoom
, The Netherlands, scores the land and penetrates the water using processed timber to retain the walls and resist decay. This allows a separation from the pedestrian and the water, providing an exciting and unexpected experience whilst walking through. The concept and execution was crucial to preserving the site’s integrity and allowing views to the Fort.

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

Built with Accsys Technology, Accoya wood undergoes a nontoxic proprietary modification process called acetylation that renders it an unrecognizable wood source, preventing fungal decay from the exposure of water and moisture while increasing its structural stability.  While this water walkway is simple in concept, it is quite complex in its execution.  We are thoroughly impressed by this as it is an old bridge concept transformed into a new interaction with the body of water once below. While some may find the whole experience of walking through the water interrupted by a recessed bridge somewhat intimidating; we believe the opportunity of traversing the bridge, exciting.

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

photo © RO & AD Architects

sources:

RO&AD Architects

  • friend
    element | 2011-12-01 12:08:48

    hello. Can I get a answer? My question stay... Bridge is phenomenal by the way, but what happen in case of if arrives a ranfall?...resolution of dewatering? what in case of circumfusion? sorry for a stupid question, thanx

  • friend
    OMAR HARB | 2012-03-01 11:25:27

    I remarked the following;The wood flooring is fixed above a sum pit since there is gap between each wood tiles. which means that there is absolutely a pump that evacuate the water.

  • friend
    Artisok | 2011-12-01 14:53:57

    hello, i have the same question like ELEMENT

  • friend
    I'm with stupid | 2011-12-02 03:06:49

    I believe it has two sump pumps in pits, that can pump any water that gets into it and below the wood floor boards out.

  • friend
    silvia | 2011-12-02 12:29:14

    same question for me...

  • friend
    AgaGo | 2011-12-03 19:03:40

    the same question...what happens if the level of water rises?

  • friend
    elenai | 2011-12-05 20:36:49

    I think they have to swim then to get to the other side

  • friend
    Amodoro | 2011-12-13 14:18:50

    nice... but what if there is a flood? just a bit more and it is flooded... Like it though.

  • friend
    zenius | 2011-12-14 23:14:36

    The answer - nobody walks when rainfall arrives, water runs over and under the bridge, everybody stands on the land and has fun :-)

  • friend
    Ivor | 2012-01-28 23:45:29

    All water is regulated in the Netherlands.This area around the fortress definitely is, as it was also used as a defense mechanism in time of war. So if it rains a lot, more water is just pump out of this area and the level stays the same.Problem solved

  • friend
    Sultony | 2012-02-01 12:02:15

    This is a beautiful concept - a bit of lateral thinking. The first type of deep river crossing was by a log, then raft, then boat which entered the water. Then came the idea of building OVER the river a bridge to enable horses etc to get across. To revert back to entering the water using a sunken bridge (half tunnel) is quite amazing. We make cuttings in the earth for canals and railways - this is a cutting in water!

  • friend
    OMAR HARB | 2012-03-01 11:21:34

    simply...perfect

  • friend
    Chris Jansen | 2012-04-01 18:12:32

    What happened in the later photos? It's as if the nature around it died.

  • friend
    j9400 | 2012-11-13 17:39:59

    My guess is that the 'later' photos in the article were actually photo taken first, before the grass grew in. It appears to me that these were taken JUST after construction...This is just my guess, though.

  • friend
    John | Estudio de Diseño Web Sevilla | 2012-11-03 22:50:53

    Es impresionante, solo me queda la duda de si tiene problemas con crecidas del canal.

  • friend
    Marcela | 2013-05-16 18:37:02

    John creo en el segundo comentario hacen la misma pregunta y responden que tiene un sistema de piso flotante o algo similar que permite la perfecta evacuación del agua

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