Tondo

OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen

“Despite its modest surface, this project attests to the masterful use of architecture that can not only satisfy functional and structural demands but also add an important conceptual dimension: the bridge might be understood as a mirage in the public realm, the illusion of an open window into the administration workplace and an echo of the sky and the street activity.” Sofia von Ellrichshausen

The architecture of disappearance

— Véronique Patteeuw

Stretched between a nineteenth-century classicist façade and a twenty-first-century attempt at postmodernism, Tondo, the footbridge by Office Kersten Geers David Van Severen and Bollinger+Grohmann (B+G), offers the city a robust piece of infrastructure. The project needed to connect the Belgian Federal Parliament and the Forum building while bridging a difference in height of 90 cm over less than 15 m, being wheelchair accessible, and having as little impact as possible on the existing architecture. Critical of the new geometries often proposed for these kinds of projects, the architects returned to the classic, geometric form of the perfect circle. The circular plan was able to respond with a single gesture to the important and contradictory constraints while creating a strong and autonomous form. ‘If you have to mediate between two buildings, you can only do it tangentially. So, what you do is to turn the question around and create an ideal world that stands on its own’, the architects explain. Tondo is such an environment. Referring to the circular tondo paintings by Renaissance artists such as Raphael, Botticelli and Michelangelo, the eponymous project presents itself as a spatial element, an entity with its own autonomy. 

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  • OFFICE Kersten Geers David Van Severen

  • http://officekgdvs.com/

  • Tondo

  • Brussels, Belgium

  • Connecting bridge between two buildings on either side of the street

  • Selection procedure of the Brussels Government Architect (BMA)

  • The Federal Government of Belgium

  • 14/01/21

  • 105 m²

  • 986 000,00 €

  • Bollingher+Grohmann

  • HP engineering

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