It was August 14, 2018 when a terrible news rebounded on all newspapers. The Morandi bridge in Genoa had collapsed bringing with it a trail of controversy and above all many tears for the 43 victims of the collapse. Almost two years later, in its place stands the bridge designed and built by Renzo Piano. It will be inaugurated on August 3rd at 6.30pm. the mayor and commissioner for reconstruction Marco Bucci announced it.
Morandi bridg: in the sixties a futuristic work
The Ponte sul Polcevera better known as Ponte Morandi from the name of the engineer Riccardo Morandi, was designed and built between 1963 and 1967. A futuristic engineering work for the time. It had been designed with an impressive cable-stayed structure in reinforced and prestressed concrete. The result at the end of the construction was impressive. Eleven bays winded along the city path, towering over and crossing the territory. It had an 18-meter wide road surface which was divided into four lanes.
Its grandeur was also in height: at its maximum point, there were 45 meters above the ground and the support antennas reached 90 meters. A complex and fragile structure at the same time and often subjected to maintenance. This until the day of the tragedy on August 14, 2018 at 11.36 am when the building collapses in pouring rain, dragging the fate of 43 people with it. The skyline of the city accustomed to the silhouette of the bridge changes suddenly.
A bridge of a great Genoese: Renzo Piano
The city is cut in two. The rescue machine starts in addition to the dead, several injured. 556 are the displaced among the inhabitants of public housing built over time under its spans. A solution is immediately sought. Both to understand what happened and to reunite the city divided by the collapse again. Renzo Piano international archistar gets to work and from his inspiration and from his big heart he conceives a work that can give hope to Genoa and its citizens. After the demolition of the surviving sections, completed in August 2019, the reconstruction begins. Renzo Piano presents his bridge as a “simple and thrifty” work that will last a thousand years. It is made of steel, light and linear, 1067 meters long, with 19 spans and 18 concrete piles on which the viaduct rests. A great engineering work among those made in Italy, both for its size and, above all for the speed of execution of the works.
On August 3rd the inauguration
The bridge that has passed all the tests in these days will be inaugurated on August 3, as announced by Mayor Marco Bucci in his role as commissioner for reconstruction. This date was agreed with the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella and with the authorities of the institutions. It will be called the “Genova San Giorgio” bridge. The saint is very dear to the Genoese. Its popularity has its roots in the time of the crusades. In Turkey St. George and the Crusaders rescued the Genoese allowing them to win the battle. An effective metaphor to tell the tenacity of the Genoese and their rebirth from difficulties. Next to the bridge an installation will be placed in memory of the 43 victims, called the “Glade of Memory”. In white fir from the forests of Friuli Venezia Giulia devastated by the Vaia storm in 2018, the sculpture anticipates and inaugurates the realization of the future Polcevera river park.