The future bridge shall be constructed, at the earliest, in 2011.
The structure shall cross 128m with a single span and shall leave the existing bridge as pedestrian only.
It will not be soon, but the northern entrance to Pamplona will have a new “monumental, symbolic but at the same time functional and useful” Cuatrovientos Bridge, which shall free the current bridge from all its rolling traffic and will open up onto a new Guipúzcoa Avenue, which has been designed to run behind the Oblatas Convent and leaving free the Banks of the River Arga to continue along the Riverside Park. The cost of this new bridge is some €5 million and shall not be constructed before 2011.
For the moment, it is known what it shall look like, according to the design lodged by Sertecna Studios (Pamplona) and FHECOR (Madrid), who must now draw up the Final Project in a period of eight months and for a price of €350,000. The presentation was given by José Romo and Hugo Corres from FEHCOR, although Santiago Sáinz de los Terreros (Sertecna) also explained some details.
All highlighted the ‘emblematic’ character of the Project called “Puerta Eslabón”, which shall cross the River Arga some 80m down river (towards San Jorge) from the existing Cuatrovientos Bridge but it will not be exactly parallel. “It shall have a single 128m span, with both abutments on dry land”, stated Romo. The new bridge will be 30m wide and will have two or three lanes in each direction.
In a more theoretical approach towards the bridge, Hugo Corres highlighted “the numerous functional, cultural and even historical references of the new bridge; for instance, the grand triangular portico which rises over the bridge is the same height as the central nave of Pamplona Cathedral”. Apart from this deliberate coincidence, both Corres and Romo highlighted that a “slotted groove in the bridge’s deck shall permit a lot of light to pass through to the Riverside Park which runs below the carriageway; also the 128m span length allows an area free of obstacles”. In the same line, Romo emphasized the functionality of the bridge:”there are few embellishments; its design is rather contained”.
The current bridge, pedestrian in practice, and the pedestrian footpath along the Riverside Park (currently interrupted by Guipúzcoa Avenue) shall eventually be continued between Rochapea and San Jorge. On one side, the current Guipúzcoa Avenue shall integrate with the park as a pedestrian and cycle way, as was reminded by Enrique Maya, Municipal Director of Urbanism. Thus, Cuatrovientos Bridge shall recuperate its original dimensions eliminating the widening from the 60’s, which was obliged by the increase in traffic load.
The pedestrians who cross over the River Arga by this future pedestrian footbridge shall be able to cross the new Cuatrovientos on a cantilevered section below the carriageway, without having to do so accessing the Riverside Park area of san Jorge.
On the other hand, the construction of the new bridge and the future Cuatrovientos roundabout (the current, as well as being provisional, is confusing and dangerous) will be able to be done without having to wait to eliminate the railway tracks. “They have been taken into consideration so that they are compatible”, explained Maya.