Celebrating design & architecture in Pretoria

by Tania Wannenburg
Cool Capital Jnl 1 16

Pretoria’s Love Bridge is an innovative piece of architecture that continues to mesmerise couples.

It was with great excitement that the Cool Capital Catalogue was launched at a gala function at the Open Window Institute in Irene. The launch was accompanied by a documentary made of the Capital City’s inaugural, uncurated, DIY, guerrilla biennale in 2014, which took guests on a journey with the group of capital city creatives that made the biennale possible.

Both the catalogue and film graphically document the work of over 1 000 participants that collaborated to install 250 creative projects in the capital city over a 10-week period in 2014. One such exciting project featured in this book is the Love Bridge. Through this project, the organisers of Marriage Week SA, in collaboration with Cool Capital, continue to encourage a renewed focus on the institution of marriage.

The Love Bridge was an addition to an existing bridge in Magnolia Dell making it possible for visitors to attach a lock to the bridge as a symbol of love and commitment. It is a permanent 9x3m structure supported by a reinforced concrete footing. It includes a walkway covered with composite decking, a pergola roof on one side and a bench on the other.

The addition was constructed so that it would not damage the integrity of the existing bridge, and special consideration was given to the weight of the locks. This structure can support an imposed load of 500kg per m². The bridge was opened during a breakfast event at which over 100 couples attached locks to the bridge. Since its unveiling, many additional locks have been added, and it has been used as a stage for small musical performances.

The project received ample support from various companies who donated time, money, materials and expertise, namely: Walls & Roofs in Africa; FLOORS in Africa; Intiem Magazine; W Design Studio; ML Hugo Consulting Engineers; Gert Visser Staalwerke; EcoWood; Baldwins Metal Land; Belgotex Floors; Arcelor Mittal; 1 Life; Huckleberry’s Restaurant and SA Marriage Week.

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