Paul de Ruiter

A “Bridge of Trees” across the A9 in Amstelveen

A safe, landscaped crossing that reinforces the city’s green topography

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Over the next few years, a stretch of the A9 motorway will be widened, and a 1.3-kilometre section in Amstelveen will be lowered and covered to form a tunnel. A new 200-metre bridge above the tunnel will provide pedestrian and bicycle passage from the southern part of the Amstelveen to its centre.

Our winning entry, which we designed in collaboration with CULD (Complex Urban Landscape Design) and structural engineering firm Tielemans Bouwconstructies, will be a landscaped “Bridge of Trees” that resembles nothing so much as a leafy park.

Paul de Ruiter: “We conceived the bridge as the green passageway to the city centre, a landscaped embodiment of Amstelveen’s international reputation as a garden city.

“Bridge of Trees” design the clear favourite

The Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment and the municipality of Amstelveen offered local residents the chance to vote for their favourite design.

Prior to the ballot, a team of specialists assessed all the submitted proposals on the basis of safety, engineering soundness, cost and functionality, among other criteria. Our design was chosen as one of the four candidates for residents of Amstelveen to vote on at the end of November 2017, and it went on to win 77 per cent of the 12,000 votes, making it the clear favourite.

A9 committee member Herbert Raat (VVD): “We were blown away by the level of participation in this ballot. The winning design feels like a natural extension of Amstelveen’s green character.

A9 committee member Herbert Raat (VVD): “Amstelveen’s choice was unequivocal. We were simply blown away by the level of participation in this ballot; it’s a clear indication of people’s desire to have a say in their city’s development. The winning design feels like a natural extension of the city’s green character. As far as I’m concerned, the next step is for Amstelveners to choose a name for the bridge.”

Paul de Ruiter: “With its meandering paths, shady trees and lush sections of green, the bridge resembles nothing so much as a leafy park.

As night falls, subtle lighting will pick out the trees and greenery, presenting Amstelveen’s new icon as a safe and peaceful oasis in the surrounding dark, a garden of calm above the high-speed road network below.

Freer passage and safer crossing

The bridge will span the traffic junction at the overlapping intersection of the A9 and the Keizer Karelweg, and run parallel to the latter. Cyclists and pedestrians approaching from the south will ascend the bridge at the Ouderkerkerlaan and exit adjacent to the bus station. The bridge will thus allow the separation of motorized traffic and slower modes of transport, facilitating freer passage for everyone and safer crossing for cyclists and pedestrians.

Paul de Ruiter Architects, Complex Urban Landscape Design and Tielemans Bouwconstructies will now work up the design of the leafy connection that is set to reinforce the city’s green topography. The bicycle bridge will be built in the final phase of the A9’s expansion, and is scheduled to open between 2024 and 2026.

Project details


Design Paul de Ruiter Architects i.c.w. Culd

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