The Olympic Delivery Authority has shortlisted eight designers, architects and artists to produce final stage designs for 12 bridges and up to five underpasses for the Olympic Park in east London.
Jason Bruges Studio, Haque Design & Research, Tonkin Liu and Greyworld are among those jostling for the project – worth £24 000 to the winner. The ODA says up to three of the shortlisted groups could collaborate on the crossings.
The bridges and underpasses are to be designed by Allies and Morrison, but ‘the chosen designer or artist will work with the architect on the final detai – led stages of design’, according to an ODA spokesman.
A total of 30 bridges and underpasses have been planned for the park, but the 12 bridges selected to undergo final designs were chosen because they span waterways.
The structures and artwork resulting from the commission will endure beyond the 2012 games as part of the Olympic legacy.
Those shortlisted met with the ODA last Monday to discuss the brief, having fought off competition from 250 applicants in a credentialsbased pitching process. They now have six weeks to work up their designs.
Haque Design & Research director Usman Haque says the brief was to ‘design an artwork that may be part of one or more of the bridges that will become part of the fabric of the park beyond the Olympics’.
But with plans for the future of the park still not decided, the contenders have not yet been given a steer on how the designs should adapt to their new surroundings when the games are over.
Greyworld founder Andrew Shoben says, ‘It would be silly to make the designs about the Olympics, but as the games are about people watching passively we want to put people in the centre of a creative experience. This commission has huge scope.’ Greyworld covered Dublin’s Millennium Bridge in blue carpet in 1999.
We Made That partner Holly Lewis and Haque are claiming to have not put any designs down on paper. However, Haque says, ‘Nowadays, our work is about autonomy, it’s self-powered and is about linking spaces’.
SHORTLISTED OLYMPIC BRIDGE DESIGNERS
- Jason Bruges Studio
- Tonkin Liu
- Haque Design & Research
- Martin Richman
- David Cotterrell
- The Klassnik Corporation in collaboration with Riitta Ikonen and We Made That
- Simeon Nelson in collaboration with Sonia Leber and David Chesworth