Pirouette, a ballet term in French, is a type of dance turn in place on one leg. A pirouette can be done either en dedans, turning in towards the supporting leg that the dancer is turning on, or en dehors, which is turning away from the supporting leg. Pirouettes are often considered one of the most fun ballet steps to practice and do.
The Pirouette Bridge is located on the Yanhe Park of Nanjing, China. As the linear river that meander through the landscape for more than 500 meters, the bridge performs an elegant whirl over the water and links public activities from multiple heights of both sides of the river bank.
The form of the bridge directly reflects the logic of its circulation. Along its 40 meters span, three major paths as tentacles tri-direct pedestrians to new destinations across the river. As one singular form, the bridge is also featured by layers of rhythmic self-connected inner loops. Voids that are created from the shape twisting penetrate the form, and frame a series of stunning views during the pedestrian’s journey on top of the river. Integrated with the interweaving space, a spiral system in the form of “Terasaki ramps” carves the surface of the bridge, and further express the artistic sensibility of the bridge.
To achieve the optimal performance of the structure system, genetic algorithm structure optimization is used to calculate the steel structural layout. As a result of this process, the column in the center of the massing is designed in vortex shape. Resting at the north bank of the river, it not only help on balancing the bridge, as the dancer’s leg of the pirouette, but also creates the highlight space of the bridge.
Light blue-gray stucco is applied at the bottom of the bridge, to be more friendly when it smoothly merge with the landscape. On the up side, pedestrian paths are paved with synthetic track surface in gradient color, and aluminum plate are used to cover the sides of the bridge.Together with its dynamic reflection on the river, the design is to explore the potential of micro-typography, and to evoke the childlike experience of the waterfront adventure.