Providence, Rhode Island – On the south of the city, a spectacular renewal is underway. After they rerouted Interstate 195 through Providence, the former site along the Providence River became available for redevelopment. After years of planning, budgeting, design competitions and finally, construction, a pedestrian bridge is nearing completion. They selected Ipe hardwood decking for its strength, durability and natural beauty.
Architectural rendering of Ipe deck on Providence Pedestrian Bridge by inFORM Studios
The winner of the national design competition was inFORM Studios. Their winning design spans the Providence River and connects the West Side Park to the East Side Park. To keep construction costs down, the original granite piers from the interstate highway were re-purposed. The whole design is welcoming and inviting and will surely be a success with local residents and visitors. If you've heard the term 'urban blight' - this is the opposite. This project will be a sparkling renovation in a beautiful city.
Ipe deck at east side park at Providence Pedestrian Bridge
The Ipe deck and ramp on the east side of the river is already substantially completed. In addition to the Ipe hardwood decking, tubular stainless-steel railings add beauty and safety. The pressure treated lumber frame in this section allowed the use of thinner (5/4x6) Ipe decking boards.
For the main pedestrian bridge that spans the Providence River, the design team chose large 3x6 Ipe timbers for the decking. The massive thickness and exceptional strength of the Ipe hardwood decking timbers span great distances. Using these sturdy timbers adding incredible strength. It also helped keep the cost of the bridge framing within budget.
Bridge and decking area under construction by Daniel O'Connell's Sons
When completed, this area will feature an upper deck and a lower level deck. The project is under construction by the capable team at Daniel O’Connell’s Sons. Their expertise spans 130 years and their reliability and workmanship is well known. Cranes, barges, boats, backhoes, heavy equipment of all types - you name it - they love it.
Beneath the main deck area, a clever steel frame design creates an attachment point for the apron under the deck. It resembles a ship’s hull. The overall appearance makes the whole bridge look like a ship. The design team selected Wana wood boards for this section of the project. Wana wood is strong, stiff and lightweight. Among other uses, Wana wood has been used in boat construction and marine projects for centuries.