Bridge based on 'origami design' could be erected over River Don in Sheffield's Kelham Island

A bridge based on an origami design could be erected over the River Don in Kelham Island.

Tuesday, 22nd June 2021, 3:36 pm

The 20m cycle and footbridge would slope away from the Green Lane Works and cross diagonally towards Kelham Island Museum.

The Upper Don Walk Trust has submitted the plans and it’s the third time a bridge has been attempted – previous schemes by other developers failed to materialise.

Back in 2002 councillors agreed a suspension bridge could be erected from Kelham Island Museum to Brooklyn Works, Ball Street, but it never happened due to funding issues.

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Kelham Island could have a bridge based on an origami design (image Tatlow Stancer)
Kelham Island could have a bridge based on an origami design (image Tatlow Stancer)

A further scheme was submitted in 2006 for the erection of suspension bridge which councillors approved but again, it failed to be built due to funding.

Architects Tatlow Stancer say: “The existing route of the Upper Don Walk crosses Ball Street Bridge and comes to a dead end at the Alfred Beckett development.

“Walkers have to retrace their steps back to Ball Street and along Green Lane before rejoining the riverside walk adjacent to Kelham Island Museum.

“This existing route between Ball Street Bridge and the Museum requires people to navigate narrow pavements and parked vehicles which can form an obstacle.

The bridge would slope away from the Green Lane Works and cross diagonally towards Kelham Island Museum (image Tatlow Stancer).

“The development of Green Lane Works will enable the walk to connect to new pedestrian routes through the development and across the mill run via the new bridge to the lower section of the walk adjacent to the Museum.

“The new route will provide pedestrians and cyclists a safer and more accessible route from Ball Street to the Museum as well as providing views of the refurbished Green Lane Works.”

The concept is based on origami where the folds provide stiffness to the paper.

The application adds: “The same principle applies to the folded corten metal plates which form the structure to the bridge. The folds also give rise to subtle variations in light and shade in the material emphasizing the three dimensional form.

“The central section of the steel deck is to be perforated to provide the opportunity for names to be engraved.”

Planning officers are considering the application, which can be viewed here