Upcycling a bridge into a cinema

What happens when a bridge comes to the end of its technical use and needs to be replaced? You launch the world’s biggest upcycling project. 

The Danube Bridge in Linz, Austria has spanned the Danube, Europe’s second largest river, for the last 120 years. It has sadly reached its technical lifespan and can no longer accommodate the growing demands of the city. For two years, there were campaigns fighting for and against the bridge, eventually 68.1% of the population voted for demolition. Construction of a new bridge starts this year and will be completed in two to three years.

However, for a piece of architecture that has stood for 120 years and more, what will become of the old bridge when the new one is completed.

The city of Linz reached out to the creative community, including architects, designers etc, through the Berlin crowdsourcing platform Jovoto in an attempt to preserve certain elements of the old bridge. The goal of the project was to upcycle parts of the bridge into a functional public space. A prize pool of €10,000 (approximately AU$14,800) was offered to the most creative ideas and the ideas sure were creative.

Some of the awarded ideas included a floating garden, an animated pontoon bridge, and a viewing platform. However, the idea that won top prize was the Linz Bridge Cinema.




The idea brings together an outdoor cinema, together with a small amphitheater, an interactive mini-cinema, a ‘history-wall’ and a waterfront coffee shop, appropriately named ‘Under the Bridge’.



In addition to all these elements, the upcycling concept also offers visitors an observation deck so they can enjoy the stunning views in a natural space and could possibly even become a skiing ramp in the colder months.




My description doesn’t do this initiative justice. Rather check out the concept video below to see what the Linz Bridge Cinema could possibly look like one day.



We will have to wait and see whether this project makes its way off the promotional video and into real life, but it is a pretty amazing upcycling initiative.


Images via: Jovoto
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