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09. August 2021

Negrellisteg: Metal mesh for Zurich landmark

Above the tracks in front of Zurich central station hangs the Negrellisteg, a new landmark for the city. This 160-meter-long footbridge named for the Austrian engineer Alois Negrelli (1799-1858) is supported by just four pillars. Its delicate appearance is emphasized by the paneling between the balustrades and the cladding of the elevator towers made from over 800 square meters of metal mesh.

A short and safe link between two parts of the city, the Negrellisteg sees a great deal of traffic almost nine meters above the railroad tracks. The transit route designed purely as a pedestrian bridge leads to round elevator towers at either end, which are encircled by spiral staircases. To fill the balustrades of the bridge, 500 square meters of Omega 1510 stainless steel mesh were used. This involved spanning 186 elements of this relatively dense cable mesh with a free area of 35.4 percent between the top and bottom cables. The mesh panels measuring up to 2,800 millimeters long and 1,000 millimeters wide were woven in between the slightly offset railing posts to create a zigzag-shaped line. Lighting integrated into the handrails emphasizes this effect both inside and out. To prevent any risk of injury, the vertical weft wires of the fabric were bent back 180 degrees at the ends. The woven balustrade elements were mounted at the top and bottom to the horizontal cables using the Fusio flat/flat system developed by GKD.

The same type of fabric was used as a rigid mesh to clad the elevator towers. With their framework design for mounting to the towers, 290 square meters of PC-Omega 1510 mesh lend the construction a homogeneous look while serving as robust fall guard protection. Eighty-two panels, also up to 2,800 millimeters long but up to 1,260 millimeters wide, form the cylindrical, visually light shell of the elevator towers. Its semitransparent texture allows an unimpeded view from the stairs. At the same time, it is also possible to see into the towers from outside, which gives users a subjective feeling of security.

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