Park Union Bridge

The Park Union Bridge—a 250-foot long, 550-ton steel superstructure—serves as a pedestrian gateway connecting America the Beautiful Park with downtown Colorado Springs.

Size
Length: 250’; Height: 25’ above ground level; Height from deck to top of arch: 17’; Width: 16’ – 23’; Weight: 550 tons

Year
2021

Location
Colorado Springs, CO

Client
City of Colorado Springs

Designed by the same team as the adjacent U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum complex, the new pedestrian bridge takes its inspiration from the gravity-defying motion of athletes, with a 250-foot curved steel structure that floats above the railyard. Two interlocked loops, stretching from either side of the railyard, connect the museum and the park.

By extending the east-west axis of Vermijo Avenue to the America the Beautiful Park, the new bridge reconnects the urban fabric of downtown Colorado Springs, a plan that has been in development for decades. The bridge also stitches together a growing network of pedestrian bicycle paths including the Pikes Peak Greenway and Midland Trail running alongside Monument Creek.

The bridge’s generous width safely accommodates people of all ages and abilities on both bikes and on foot, with access by stair and a glass elevator on the west, and ramp and terraced steps on the east. At its widest point, an oculus at either side of the bridge frames the museum and downtown to the east, or a platform for train spotting below and a distinct look out to Pikes Peak, America's Mountain to the west. In the evenings, lighting along the bridge traces a single vector from one side of the tracks to the other, giving a sense of speed and motion while providing illumination for pedestrians and cyclists.

In collaboration with Diller Scofido + Renfro

“The bridge is an exercise in fitness - both in terms of material and geometry. The hybrid steel structure system functions as an arch and a truss, elegantly preserving views from Downtown to the majestic mountain range of Pikes Peak.”

DS+R Partner-in-Charge and Lead Designer Benjamin Gilmartin

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