Calatrava bridge to be revealed on Friday; Dallas commuters rejoice

Car-owning residents of Dallas, Texas will get a taste of renowned architect Santiago Calatrava on Friday when the city will officially unveil his latest project, a vehicular bridge that links Dallas' two riverbanks.

The bridge, officially named the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge and one of three the architect has designed as part of the city's Trinity River Project, is a way for city officials to mitigate flooding and downtown traffic congestion without sacrificing elegance.

It's also a way for Dallas to have its own signature architectural flourish, much in the way that Calatrava did for New York (World Trade Center Transportation Hub) and Venice (Quarto Ponte sul Canal Grande).

"During my first visit to Dallas, I realized that the river basin had the potential to be of defining importance to the city's future development," Calatrava said. "I envisioned a recreational facility as important to Dallas as Central Park is to New York City."

Construction for the project began in 2007.

The hope is that Trinity River becomes its own attraction, instead of something to merely drive by. Some 14,000 vehicles are expected to cross the bridge each day; a sister bridge to replace nearby Interstate 30 is also in the works.

Photo: Marco Becerra/Flickr

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