It’s a beautiful thing to behold, and now the public can walk across, as well as under it. Yes, Somers Town Bridge is officially open to pedestrian and bike traffic for the first time today.
The new crossing, reportedly the 41st bridge to span over London’s 14km-long Regent’s Canal, provides a welcome link between Camley Street and the new Gasholder Gardens.
From there, the elevated trail runs onward to prime food and fountain hangout Granary Square, and one day the large Coal Drops Yard retail hub, too.
We dropped in to the ribbon-cutting ceremony this week on blazing hot Wednesday night, to hear speeches explaining the long history of this project, the engineering, and the bridge’s place in the wider plans for King’s Cross.
Visually, we think the team have really succeeded in blending the sturdy industrial feel of the area’s canal and rail past with the cutting-edge designs of its future. The unsupported, richly rust-coloured span is 38m across, yet is only 15mm thick under foot.
It provides some striking new ways to look at St Pancras Lock and the Gasholders development opposite, while its architecture chimes well with the Heatherwick-designed writhing roof over coal drops, currently still under construction nearby.
Possibly best of all, the bridge will introduce many more locals and visitors to the secluded pocket of English-countryside-in-the-city that is Camley Street Natural Park.
It’s an exciting time for the nature centre, as it is for King’s Cross in general. Make sure you take a stroll over Somers Town Bridge soon, instantly among one of London’s most exciting ways of getting from A to B.
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