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Montgomery Bridge Gets Planning Go Ahead

Photo: COWI UK

​Planning consent has been awarded for the construction of a new movable bridge in London’s Canary Wharf designed by Flint & Neill and Knight Architects.


The new 36 metre crossing will span across the southern end of the Bellmouth Passage providing a road and pedestrian link between Montgomery Square and Canary Wharf’s new district. The client, Canary Wharf Group, sought a design which provided a seamless, linear experience, rather than attempt to stand out amidst the architecturally characterful site. The resulting concept, designed by Flint & Neill and Knight Architects, with Eadon Consulting and Studio Fractal, is a cohesive and understated part of the high quality public realm in its closed position; indeed its movable nature may not be apparent to most users simply crossing the deck.

To this end, the superstructure remains below the deck; creating an open space for users above; enhanced by the use of bollards as a means of traffic separation. The steel superstructure is expressed as a set of finely composed triangular faces; a language which is taken into the concrete structure of the abutment, and the south dock edge of Water Square.

The parapets of the bridge have been designed to be experienced as a single unbroken linear element, continuous along the structure and the dock edge of Water Square beyond. A repeated module of post and infill has been avoided in favour of a regularly spaced series of vertical flat plates. In this manner visual breaks in the parapet are minimised, and the seamless transition from Montgomery Square onto the bridge and the high quality public realm beyond is emphasised.  

“The principal challenge on this project was to match the finely tuned engineering constraints of a lifting structure with an understated architectural expression that will allow the crossing to become a seamless part of the high quality Canary Wharf public realm environment in its closed position. The result is an elegant piece of local infrastructure providing users with an uninterrupted experience of the exemplary architectural environment and an essential link to Canary Wharf’s new district.”  Simon Harris, Lead Designer, Knight Architects

"The bridge was designed to be the simplest solution to a wide range of constraints and stakeholder requirements, allowing easy navigation of the dock and sitting lightly on the adjacent land owned by others. The engineering and architecture mesh to create a simple and beautiful solution to the brief which respects the long term aspirations of surrounding development and also the challenges of construction in a congested and marine environment." David Knight, Senior Engineer and Project Manager, Flint & Neill – a COWI company.

The lighting concept has been designed by Studio Fractal to co-ordinate with the lighting of the public realm of the Canary Wharf’s new district more widely. This includes high level columns which provide functional lighting to the road surface of the bridge and architectural up-lighting to the trees on the promenade south of the Water Square.

Construction is expected to commence in 2017.



LAST UPDATED: 23.01.2017