Building Better Bridges

ENR에 실린 ‘Building Better Bridges‘라는 좋은 글 중에서 발췌함.

기능과 형태에 대해서

Clearly when a bridge is designed with functionality as a priority, its form follows its function. Conversely, when a bridge is designed with aesthetics as a priority, its function follows its form.

기능과 형태의 조화를 보여주는 Oregon Coast on Highway 101의 교량을 설계한 Conde McCullough는 이런 멋진 말을 남겼다.

From the dawn of civilization up to the present, engineers have been busily engaged in ruining this fair earth and taking all the romance out of it.

기능과 형태의 관점에서 각기 교량을 이렇게 정의할 수 있다.

So, a bridge by function could be defined as a structure to span a gap and to provide passage. And, a bridge by form could be defined as work of art, to span time and provide an icon for the dreams and visions of a society.

‘세계 최고 혹은 최초’라는 단어를 유난히 좋아하는 우리나라 사람들처럼 교량 엔지니어들은 ‘EST’에 민감하다.

Also, it seems that in some cases civic pride or engineering egos also drive the desire to make bridge structures the “EST” of something; the longest, the widest, the tallest, and so on.

요즘 교량 디자인 추세가 형태(미적)만을 추구하다보니 엔지니어들의 역할이 점점 줄어들게 되고 그 결과 구조적 효율성과 경제성이 간과된다.

Canadian bridge designer and educator; Dr. Paul Gauvreau, writes of the recent trend to minimize the engineer’s role in the signature bridge process in his paper, “Teaching Bridge Design in the Grand Tradition of Modern Engineering”. He writes, “The current situation with regard to bridge aesthetics…is characterized by increasing disregard for the contribution of engineers to the definition of the aesthetically significant aspects of bridges, in favour of architects and lay people. It is wrong for engineers to be relegated to a purely technical support role based on dogmatic beliefs or political expediency. In so doing, owners deprive themselves of the richness of the engineer’s unique vision, founded in the discipline of structural efficiency and economy.”

교량을 안전하게 만드는 것 뿐만이 엔지니어의 역할이 아니다. 아름답게 만들어야 한다.

It only makes sense that a balanced, holistic approach to bridge design is essential to building great bridges. This means that engineers must learn aesthetics. Gottemoeller writes, “Aesthetic ability is not some mysterious quality bestowed by fate on a fortunate few. Though many engineers are not well prepared by their education or experience for the visual aspects of their responsibilities, they can learn what makes bridges attractive and they can produce beautiful bridges.” He also says that: “Engineers have accepted a responsibility to society for bridge design. For that reason, no engineer would knowingly build a bridge that is unsafe. For the same reason, no engineer should knowingly build a bridge that is ugly.

As engineers may struggle with aesthetics, architects may struggle with making bridges efficient, practicable, and constructible. Gauvreau writes in his paper, The Three Myths of Bridge Aesthetics; “Architects (and other visual professionals) deal with the arrangement of abstract and visual forms. There is very little in their training, day-to-day experience, and overall perspective that equips them or inclines them to work effectively in a medium which seeks to give meaningful expression to loads, equilibrium, and forces.” Accordingly, architects need to learn the basics of structural design and constructability.

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