Jinhua Hepan Bridge

Arches Bridges Viaducts Gateways Architecture Concept

Professional Category

Studio: Cundall

Architect / Designer: WilkinsonEyre

Design Team:

Cundall: Dong Chen, Nan Li, Emil Svantesson

WilkinsonEyre: Matthew Potter, Mark Chan, Nichol Wong

Country: China

Copyright: PowerChina Huadong Engineering Corporation Limited, Wilkinson Eyre, Willmore

We were appointed by HDEC (PowerChina Huadong Engineering Corporation Limited) to design a new iconic bridge across the Jinhua River in Zhejiang Province to meet the needs of Jinhua City’s growing economy and population. In collaboration with the architect, we developed three design proposals for the client and city authorities. The client selected a design option featuring a 350m long cable-stayed bridge with a maximum 175m span.

The structural system consists of an elegant 60m tall central V-shaped pylon that picks up a 50m wide steel box girder deck via inclined stay cables. The clear bridge span on each side of the pylon is approximately 135m. Gravity loads are transferred from the deck diaphragms to the prestressed stay cables supported by the top of the pylon, and down to its foundation.

Any cable-stayed bridge demands a delicate balance of geometry and forces. However, the aesthetic decision to split the pylon differentiates this bridge from other bridge designs. The split introduces a bending moment in the pylon, induced by the cables pulling only on one side. It required rigorous fine-tuning of pylon shape, angle, length, number of cables, cable spacing and prestress to meet the design criteria from both structural performance and architectural aesthetic aspects. The cable pre-stress was optimised in conjunction with the pylon and deck size to find the ideal combination for minimal deflection at deck level.

Parametric models were developed which encoded the complex geometry generation, rapidly evaluating a large pool of design options and producing immediate results that informed the subsequent design iterations.

Pedestrians are safely separated from motor vehicles via strategically positioned cables which are inset from the deck edge. The cable placement reduces angles between the pylon and cables, subsequently decreasing the bending-induced stress in the pylon and deck and allowing for smaller cross-sections and a lighter, elegant, slender-looking bridge.

The final structural design incorporates prestressed cables, presenting a complex interplay of forces at work. The Jinhua Hepan bridge takes this complexity one step further with its feature slender and split pylon.


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