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Timber Bridge Showcase in NYC

22 August 2023

New timber bridge extends high line landscape in New York City: The High Line–Moynihan Connector bridge’s use of glulam evokes both nature and rail infrastructure while reducing embodied carbon.

The designers explored many types of bridge structures before choosing the Warren truss design, which features equilateral triangles and was patented in 1848. “The Warren truss elicits the railroad mentality,” Besjak says, providing a metaphoric connection with the High Line’s origins as urban infrastructure at one end of the bridge and the still-active train station at the other. 

The Warren truss has an inherent simplicity that appealed to the designers—each structural glulam member is identical in size and acts purely in either compression or tension. “The bridge is a six-sided box that is perceived in many different ways,” Besjak says. For pedestrians, the open frame provides a warm protection that encourages taking in views of the surrounding cityscape. But it can also be viewed as a sculptural object from the street below and from the many high rises that surround it.

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