Trestle is the design for a pedestrian bridge that will connect Moynihan Station to Hudson Yards in Midtown Manhattan. It was selected as a finalist for the Metals in Construction 2019 design competition. The task of the competition, hosted by the Steel Institute of New York, was to design the lightest possible steel pedestrian crossing that combines user comfort and sustainability in the best possible way.

Task: Lightweight Steel Pedestrian Crossing with User Comfort and Sustainability

The 530 m long steel space frame bridge spans 10 m above street level. It is a 3D Vierendeel truss supported on inclined steel columns and positioned to minimise the impact on the street level. Werner Sobek’s design is complex in form and at the same time simple in structure. Consequently, the bridge is expressive, lightweight and yet economical to construct. Its design evokes formal and tectonic links with track bridges and traditional railway bridge trestles. At the same time, the design supports a high degree of programmatic flexibility and rhythmic modulation of the architectural experience in terms of structural expression.

Solution: Space-Frame Made from Recyclable 3D-Printed Sand Moulds

The Space-Frame consists of standard steel tubes connected by digitally fabricated steel joints. These steel connections are cast in recyclable 3D-printed sand moulds, which avoids the waste that is unavoidable with disposable moulds. Furthermore, the structure is designed to be fully reusable or recyclable.

Within a dense urban context, Trestle’s sustainability strategy is based on creating a unique microclimate generated by a lush vegetative landscape that modulates between urban light, acoustic, water and heat factors. Together, these components create a high level of user comfort while supporting the development of the neighbourhood.

Cooper Robertson with Werner Sobek, New York/USA

Planning time

Construction time

Services by Werner Sobek

  • Concept design
  • Structural design
  • Sustainability planning

11,000 m²

Steel Institute of New York/USA

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