Beautiful engineering - Pont de Singe, Tatton Park - Civil Engineering Blog

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Monday, September 22, 2014

Beautiful engineering - Pont de Singe, Tatton Park

'Pont de Singe, Tatton Park, Cheshire, England'

French artist Olivier Grossetête designed a intriguing "hanging bridge" that dangles from three helium-filled balloons above a lake in the UK. "The use of helium was sometimes criticized," he said, since helium is difficult to extract and, like all molecules, is becoming a scarce natural resource. Yet there's something so compelling about his da Vinci-esque design, which is like shock therapy for the stagnant imagination.

“Replacing the bearings [with a] helium balloon bridge seems to abstract laws of gravity and questions our perception,” wrote Grossetête. And it also challenges us to think about low-impact, temporary design that can respond to its natural environment. As Hurricane Sandy revealed, water levels are rising and we might be forced to develop more infrastructure that can function without land-based anchors.

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