Upcycle the Bridge

Upcycle the old Danube bridge in Linz.


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Hello Creators, As an active creator in the field of up cycling I’m very excited about this contest. After close to 120 years the old railway bridge is at the end of its technical life span. The City of Linz and the LINZ AG are planning to build a more modern bridge in its place. However, opinion is divided about whether this piece of history should simply be demolished or kept as a separate bridge. If the citizens of Linz will vote in favor of keeping the old bridge the question will be HOW. Your creativity will be tested for this HOW, how will you embody the memory of this old bridge? Will you up cycle pieces of the old bridge? In what way will you reuse it? I hope you will find the most creative and convincing concepts to recycle the bridge in one of the 3 public locations. Feel free to be inventive both conceptually and visually and keep in mind the community of LINZ and the essence of the bridge. I’m here for any questions, Let’s us all start in the spirit of honest and friendly online collaboration. Talva D.

Great Contest. I am still living here in Linz and got lots of memories with this old bridge (if someone needs informations ;-) . I got one question.....If another one got (for example) an idea for usage as playground is it alowed to reuse the functional element but being different in design? Would be great to know to prevent problems. :-)

If someone needs feedback. Just ask me. :-)

The design and the conception are in question, and must be original. The function can be multiplied, as there are different ways to design the same function.

Thanks Talva for your information. :-)

Dear Jovotos, A few background details and links, unfortunately in German only, try Google translation if needed. A creative got in touch with us to point out that the old bridge is in a bad condition. This condition is also one of the reasons that it is not under monument protection anymore. A renovation of the bridge would be very expensive; in addition, there are doubts how sustainable such a renovation would be. Keeping the old bridge and building a new bridge next to it is not only more expensive, it also causes aesthetical issues and is not a good traffic solution. For those interested into more background information, see http://www.linz.at/leben/eisenbahnbruecke.asp. However, these issues are also currently controversially discussed in Linz. I think we could add to the useful links: http://www.linz.at/leben/eisenbahnbruecke.asp (Background on the old bridge) The plans of the new bridge can be accessed here: http://www.linz.at/presse/2014/201409_75477.asp Good luck

I did a small research of whats going on in Linz (sorry but in german)

The new bridge: http://www.bruecke-fuer-linz.at/

The historical details of the old bridge: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linzer_Eisenbahnbr%C3%BCcke

An Article about the bridge: http://www.gasthaus-lindbauer.at/files/eisenbahnbruecke.pdf

I also add some sightseeing points in Linz as side information and research help for your concepts (and hints what cool stuff is missing in Linz). :-)

The Ars Electronica Center nearby danube river: http://www.aec.at/news/ https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ars_Electronica

The Lentos Museum of Arts: http://www.lentos.at/html/de/index.aspx https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lentos_Kunstmuseum_Linz

The Schlossmuseum: http://www.landesmuseum.at/schlossmuseum/ https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linzer_Schloss#Schlossmuseum

A fantastic art installation nearby the shopping Street Landstraße where you can walk over the rooftops of Linz. It's placed on one of our modern art's museum. http://www.hoehenrausch.at/ https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Offenes_Kulturhaus_Ober%C3%B6sterreich

A museum about steel and steel manifacturing because Linz is a steel producing City: http://www.voestalpine.com/stahlwelt/Stahl-erleben/Architektur

if you want I try to add frequently more informations. :-)

Thank you very much for sharing this information

Maybe also Interesting ... some Informations and Impressions about the Danube and Linz (with activities) http://www.linz.at/presse/6588.asp :-)

It would be great to have some Landscape-Plans with measurments of the 3 areas that should be used - Or exact GOOGLE-MAPS or GOOGLE-EARTH locations. Thank you.

here is what I answered Mocki in relations to his proposal scale, The proposal has to have a certain scale in relation in to its function. However I agree it has to be coordinated with the logic of its location. I will see what I can do about having plans to the sites. In the meantime check Google map. Thank you for the Google map coordinates, great help.

Looking for a function is a beginning and creates the very first frame to your proposals, which should essentially be about up cycling the old bridge and preserving its memory. I propose you all to check architectural and urban projects that deal with Memory and renovation. Such as for example the Twin tower project, though it is much more charged as a project it can give an example. Or else renovation projects, in old cities, in war zones, as the Berlin wall, old city of Jerusalem wall and new entrance to the city, Beirut renovation projects, Boston along the water front…. the list is long, use the web.

How many ideas can we summit?

Hi there, It does vary from project to project, but to be specific for this project you can submit up to 10 ideas. This information can be found in the idea upload page.

Thanks, Jess. I though so, but as I would like to invite someone, I wanted to check before.

Hi Talva! Who is organizer of this contest? Do You can give us some CAD files or drawings of old bridge?

Have a nice weekend!

Organizer and sponsore of the contest is LINZ AG who owns the bridge. Who supports citizen platform in favor of the new bridge but promotes the idea of upcycling the old bridge.

There are blueprints of the old bridge in the download materials in the briefing. I do not think there are newer digital files. Will find out.

over 5 years ago

Hey TalvaDesign! Is it ok to place my "marina" to Winterhafen?

I don't know but I think the Winterhafen is not a porperty of Linz AG. (There the danube also is realy strait to place the bridge parts. I know because it Is one of my running tracks. I think It will be more present on one of the other 3 locations but this is only my personal oppinion) :-)

Proposal should be at one of three locations given, never the less I forward the question, bit more patience please:)

Hi skybre, Let me investigate and I'll get back to you! Best, Jess

Hi skybre, As Talva mentioned your proposal should be in one of the three locations given in the briefing. All the best, Jess

If someone need's more images of the bridge, details etc..... (I did a Project for my studies where I photographed this danube bridge) please add a comment that I know this could be relevant. :-)

This could be a relevant information for all planning something on LOCATION 3 There could be cargo freighter traffic in this area and ships getting there from danube to the harbor area. I think for projects across the Traun river it is relevant to plan enough height for the ships. Also plan enough space under the bridge (no columns in the middle, etc.) for this ship traffic.

Here is the location of the port where these ships deploy/load their cargo: https://www.google.at/maps/place/48%C...

As short help where location 3 is situated: https://www.google.at/maps/place/48%C...

I know. but the Traffic map only show actual ship traffic. Pls check location 3 by following the traun. There you find a harbor for cargo. ;-)

a relevant point is also, they need much more space to navigate theyr ships especialy against the stream.

over 5 years ago

help me to understand meaning of this competition!If you build totally new building, why to use shape of the old bridge? I think you can t use old structures if you add glass elements. I think is not ecological way to built. Just my opinion

I think it's a personal decission if someone want's to use the old shape or not. It only depends on the feasibility of every construction.

over 5 years ago

of course it is but I think it should have some kind of relation with architecture and structures. If you build totally new building you should count some thickness of structures and make it more ecological way. I would like to hear also some opinions from some architects what they think about this!

Hi skybre, Interesting thoughts and discussion.

The decision of up cycling is conceptual before being technical. This contest is about embodying the memory of the old bridge, as it is no longer in the conditions necessarily for its function, yet too expensive to be fully renovated. I think this information is clear from the brief. The way you choose to embody that memory could be by up cycling fragments from the old bridge but is not limited to that. If you follow my earlier comments I have given a few links and examples of renovation projects around the world that could inspire. Using old up cycled fragments is technically possible and might be of interest for architectural, urban, intellectual, historical, sustainability or visual reasons. The main issue is usually the costs of such operation. I think your concept is premature to questions the engineering feasibility; yet you could give a more develop idea of how you intend to build the 2 buildings on the 2 sides of the river. Give us more materials to be able to help you. Don’t give up!

over 5 years ago

but you think that wasting millions just to built new building that remind of old bridge make sense compere to repair old bridge?

Hi skybre this may help you to understand the question of "Memory and Place" . There are many books on this matter.

over 5 years ago

I should read it thx! ..I just think people don t understand here that it is a meaning why the bridge looks like this

Nice link bankok, thanx Up cycling the bridge allows both a new development and keeping the memory of the old bridge. But your question skbre, whether it is all worthwhile is a legitimate question. In the context of this competition we assume that it is worthwhile keeping the bridge memory, and that maintaining and fully renovating the old bridge is an expensive option.

This was a comment both for your proposal page and the comments in the brief, all in one.

Is anyone using the bridge at the moment? Would it be possible to leave cars outside at the future, or just 1 narrow car way for emergency cases?

Yes. At the momement is is an essencial part of traffic here in Linz used by pedestrians, cars, busses and bikes. There is no train traffic for years. Here is some info about the planned new one: http://www.linz.at/presse/2014/201409_75477.asp

Hi @all!! I got a Link for usage in this contest only. It contents a ziped file with images of this old danube bridge from different locations and detail shots. I needed them for my studies.


Feel free to use them as information about the bridge and pictures for your slides here.

Thank you Mika, very kind to share it with us all:)

I love to help. :-) If some more or other pictures are necessary please ask me I try to take some for you all. :-)

If it is possible - Could you take some images from the DONAU with view to the places - May be you should rent a boat - and may be panorama shots or at least wide screen very high resolution -Just charge the costs to jovoto.................. ;-)

You mean the 3 Locations. Hmmm, I try to get there in the next days when I got time left. Location 1 is easy to reach. Location 2 could cause problems because the area around is a forbidden area (heavy industry) but could be possible from the other side of the river. Location 3 as hard to reach.

Dear Talva, I saw the pictures illustrating bad condition of the old bridge, you've given us. Maybe it was on the web-site of new bridge. I can't find this information again. :( Could you please help me and give a sign, where it is. Thanks a lot!

Sorry for the delay, please write directly to OlofEkman.

@skybre "but you think that wasting millions just to built new building ..." repering wil cost 98 milions of euro and this is per one part ! you can find many documentaries on youtube. https://youtu.be/-Qv4eZQTABY?t=2m45s

so it means new bridge could cost 300 millions? Am I right?

Can we assume that the three main sections of the bridge can still span from end-to-end and be used for pedestrians only in another location? Or is the condition of the bridge such that it's re-use as a bridge is not feasible?

There are different opinnions in local news. Some say it can be restored cheaper than the new one. Some say it is more expensive than building up a new one.

One point is definitely clear. The city needs a bridge there because it is a traffic hot spot.

The bridge is in a bad state, it can be renovated, but in very high costs. It can’t be kept in its place, as a new bridge should be taken its place. It could be intellectually moved though it is not very likely, for the same feasibility reasons. As for this competition, the client will prefer to see segments being up-cycled rather than the whole bridge.

"segments" in a free definition :) could be a whole main section

@svpribyl you can check out my images of this bridge. There are some detail shots where you can see the structure itself and become an overview of the state. I added a comment with the link a little bit up but I add it for you here...


Thanks, mikaR. Your photos are excellent. They also show the very lightweight nature of the bridge and encourage me to bring up another point: Most of the entries (mine included) have simplified the representation of the bridge due to the difficulties of modeling all the detail. This gives a false sense of the strength of the bridge. Trusses are designed to span from one point to another. Some truss members are in compression and some are in tension. One cannot simply stand the truss on end or flip it upside down and expect it to support itself, much less additional weight. While some of the entries show very romantic and idealistic proposals, very few of them are actually workable. I have a concern that entries that are the best "eye-candy" are garnishing much support based solely on their visual impact and not based on actual feasibility. At least one of the most outrageous proposals is by an architect, who should know better.

In previous "architectural" competitions on Jovoto, submissions have been ranked very highly by people who have little knowledge about architecture, structure, strength of materials, and compliance with programmatic requirements. With regard to commenting on the projects: It's difficult to be supportive and to help with the development (the crowd-supported design aspect) of a project whose initial concept is so flawed. Members are reluctant to speak the obvious in many cases, because of the emphasis that the site has placed on being "helpful". It's the old adage: "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all". I would like to see the Jovoto Guides take a stronger role in this. I also suggest that, in the future, at least half of the awards in these projects that require extensive knowledge about a field (in this case, architecture) should be determined by the jury.

I agree everything with svpribyl! ;)

Your concern is being listened to, especially as it being communicated respectfully. As you wrote yourself, the platform has its limits. In order to gain opening and fluidity a very positive yet critical guidance has to be assumed. A too offensive and critical atmosphere might gain in professionalism but might block semi professional minds, and even good architects might be troubled expositing unfinished ideas on line in a too critical environment. Balance is delicate as you say, and might allow some unprofessional ideas to exist. From my experience, the good ideas are seen and studied by the jury with the help of Jovoto professionals. As for your suggestion regarding more jury awards, I will pass it on. Best,

Interesting discussion here guys. You have a good point svpribyl! And so do Talva! :) In this challenge the client wanted to invite the public into the discussion and brainstorm (crowdstorm as we call it!), and therefore it's was left very open in regards of limitations etc. The main focus in this challenge is to get a lot of different perspectives and ideas. And that's the reason we run an open Crowdstrom in this case. When the main goal is to get more specialised ideas, we usually run a private Crowdstorm (jovoto.Private) and invite the professionals within that field. You can have a look on our product page to get a better understanding: http://www.jovoto.com/clients/product

Btw, have you seen that there is a special prize for the best feedback svpribyl? With your knowledge I think your feedback could be super valuable to many creatives, plus it could help the ideas become more feasible! (Rear more about the 'Feedback Award' here: http://www.jovoto.com/faq/basics#what-are-all-the-different-prizes-i-can-win)

All the best,


"If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all". you were so right.!!If you say something here you are so out :(

Hi! One information for your plannings. The 3 loactions sometimes could get flooded with wather. Here is a short clip what was going on in the past to get an overview for your plannings. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgZkfrl7CO0

Yep, a strong rope and floaties also can be useful. ;-)

OMG !!!! Thanks so much !!! It'a very useful info, Michael!!!!

Talva and Olof, thank you for your responses and the information you provided. You explained some of the thought process about how and why this project exists, and the expectation of the clients.

Glad it's clearer svpribyl! ;)

Best, //Olof

First of all, congrats for this amazing initiative. You are doing a great job engaging politics to human development and social collaboration. Congratulations to the city of Linz for it.

I'm working on a special and "quite different" project, that hope covers your expectations. Just need to confirm the height of the bridge. Is it 259cm?

Best, Val

I think it is base level above sea level

But, what's the height of the estructure from the basement to the top?

I think it's nearly 25,9 meters from ground level

check the blue print n2

in the downloads info

Great entries everybody! Please do your best to finalize your proposal before tomorrow and remember to be just in your rating!

Hi guys!

Great to see so many great ideas in this project, amazing job guys! Now make sure that you rate the ideas that you think are the smartest solutions! There's another 4 days to rate, go gO GO! :)

All the best,


I would like to congratulate everybody who took part at this contest, I think there are a lot a well elaborated ideas, thumbs up!!!

Although I did not take part at this contest, please allow me to point out one more thing.. I would like send a big round of applause to Michael ( @mikaR) for his fantastic engagement in this project!!! There is almost no idea he did not comment on and tried to help with his suggestions , not to speak about all the information brought together in the briefing!!! Hats off, you have all my respect!!!

Michael Hut ab, was du hier an Hilfe geleistet hast ist einfach großartig!!!

Great job guys, this project is now closed and we are doing rating monitoring and will announce the final result soon. Stay tuned!

All the best,


Dear innovators, supporters & architects,

The rating monitoring is now done and I have the final result for the community awards! Give a big round of applause for: Linz Bridge Cinema by Ioan-Catalin Ralea-Toma & Vlad Andrei Popa Levels by RK_341 Tropical Arboretum by andrepradiktha Viewing platform by G_Sasha & Monstro Floating Garden by Wolfgang Biebach Leaf by RK_341 Animated pontoon bridge by aPunct Dynamic Area Linz by mmconcept "Linzer Torte" by lemo & Kakel "Where the crocodile fly?" by gabrielefilippi75

And great team work by Ioan-Catalin Ralea-Toma & Vlad Andrei Popa who also receives the 'Best Collaboration Award' for their idea Linz Bridge Cinema

And a big thanks goes out to mikaR for supporting and giving valuable feedback to a bunch of ideas. mikaR contributed with over 100 helpful comments in this project and for that he will receive the 'Best Feedback Award'. Thanks for your support mikaR!

Thanks for all the great submissions and creative solutions, it's been an interesting project to follow. And thanks to Tal for great guiding as well!

All the best,


So many great works! Congratulations to everyone!

Sorry to ask, but are there any jury winners?

Congratulation to all winners!! and big thanx to MikaR for his outstanding and so helpful feedback in this project!

about 5 years ago

"1. Stay simple with your program and your architecture, not 10 buildings but one, not ten functions but one strong and clear one. 3. Keep in mind that the bridge is in a bad state, it’s rusting and falling apart, this is why it would be very hard to renovate it for its old function. The old structure can carry itself, any extra weight will need additional new structure, which again would make your project more expensive ands less feasible."


Good competition and I hope the city will elect to build the winning entry!

Some more exciting news for you!

Yesterday morning the four jury members had a press conference in Linz where they announced the jury winner. Ready? *drumroll*...Give a huge round of applause for: Floating Garden by Wolfgang Biebach - Great work and a big congratulations to you Wolfgang!

These additional five ideas were among the finalists, great work by all of you as well: 2. Danube Stairway by Benjamin Baum 3. Eisenbahnmarkt by Sander H 4. Viewing platform by G_Sasha & Monstro 5. LinzBRDG by gergelykukucska, debrarhelleitold & davidvarga 6. Spiral Pavilion by svpribyl

What happens now? On the 27th of September the city of Linz will have a public vote where they are going to decide either to build the new bridge or not. If the people decide to build the new bridge, Linz AG will try to realize Wolfgang's idea for upcycling the old bridge.

Stay tuned for more information!

Best, Olof

Congrats to ALL WINNERS - and congrats to the community for voting........... ;-)

Hey everyone!

I wanted to let you know about an opportunity similar to Upcycle the Bridge. At the moment we are running a crowdstorm with adidas, Freudenberg & more where they invite architects, interior designers, foodies and innovators to design and rethink the future food experience for their employees for the year 2025. Check out the brief here and feel free to ask any questions under the brief.

p.s. If you submit your ideas before halftime feedback on the 21st of September, you could earn 1 of 2 MacBook Pros with Retina Display!

Hope to see some of your ideas soon!

Best, Tal