London’s Garden Bridge: A Profile

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London’s Garden Bridge: A Profile

What’s this all about ?

Last week, mouth-watering artist’s impressions were released of a proposed new bridge in London. The capital offers a fair few ways of crossing the Thames already, but this particular design has excited Spotless World because it’s a pedestrian bridge, which doubles up as a garden. The structure would span from Temple over to the South Bank, with greenery rising 367m above the Thames.

Who’s designed it?

You know the guy who dreamed up the new Routemaster? It’s him. Or to be more precise, Thomas Heatherwick. The young designer said he was inspired by Joanna Lumley, who had an idea to link north and south London with a garden. She’s already described the Garden Bridge quite beautifully: “There will be grasses, trees, wild flowers, and plants, unique to London’s natural riverside habitat. And there will be blossom in the spring and even a Christmas tree in mid-winter. I believe it will bring to Londoners and visitors alike peace and beauty and magic.” Manhattan’s Highline, a park built on an old suspended rail network, is surely also partly behind the inspiration for the concept.

What do we think to the idea ?

We adore it! The images of the Garden Bridge look great, and it’s seriously clever way of creating more green space right in the capital’s centre. We reckon the bridge will help to cut down traffic by encouraging people to walk. That will also, of course, promote healthy living. And the Garden Bridge is bound to inspire a few more Londoners to be active in the city’s gardens and allotments. The only downside to the Garden Bridge we can possibly envisage is if there’s a toll fee (if it goes ahead it’ll be funded privately). As long as that’s not the case, we’re on board 100%.

Is it actually going to happen ?

We hope so! The design has been put forward for a public consultation this week, which will run until 20 December. If all goes well, then Heatherwick, who has teamed up with engineering firm Arup, will aim to get planning permission around next spring. The earliest we’d see the Garden Bridge in use would be 2016-17. Generally speaking, there has been a big positive response to the design; from Londoners, from the press, and perhaps most reassuringly of all, TfL, who commissioned the project. It’s great to see that they’re serious about making London a greener place.

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