AHMM’s proposal for the Oklahoma Pedestrian Bridge reinvents a former rail river crossing to create a safe and attractive off-street alternative for cyclists and pedestrians. The design aims to become a key part of the existing river trail, spanning the river and expanding the city’s network of recreational trails. This project offers a unique opportunity to restore a disused local landmark and celebrate the rich history of the bridge, river and surrounding communities.
The existing bridge was built by the Frisco Railroad in 1902 to cross the Oklahoma River (the seven mile stretch of the North Canadian River that runs through the state). The railroad continued to operate the line to Union Station until the early 1980s.
AHMM’s proposed design includes a pavilion at the centre of the bridge to provide a moment for respite: a place to, rest, fish and take in the view. This sheltered space would incorporate a green roof to improve biodiversity and offer protection from the sun and rain. The design incorporates a wind turbine and solar panels to power lights and feed back to the grid. It retains some of the original structure but replaces the timber sleepers with more durable precast concrete planks. The bridge would pay homage to the history of the line by incorporating the red of the Frisco Railroad in its design.
One of the aims of this project is to educate people about the history of the bridge, the river and the local biodiversity by incorporating informational displays.