Since the Netherlands lies just one meter above sea level — an eighth of the country lies below sea level — it has an extensive flood history.
To combat this issue, Dutch designers have constructed numerous dikes, levees, and seawalls across the country. The Dutch are extremely proud of their water management.
Now, Dutch architects have designed a bridge that can flood and still be usable
Known as the Zalige Bridge, the bridge was constructed by NEXT Architects and H+N+S Landscape Architects. The bridge represents a unique approach to design. The architects have not lifted the surface of the bridge above the floodplain, but have decided to embrace the water by keeping the bridge level with it.
During floods when the bridge becomes fully submerged, it can still be accessed by using the concrete blocks that rise above the surface of the bridge, allowing pedestrians to cross.
“All designs by NEXT architects start from the unique characteristics of a place. This bridge is built on the floodplains; this fact was used to design a bridge that strongly connects and interacts with the river landscape; as a path over the water,” explains Michel Schreinemachers, partner NEXT architects. “It makes people experience the changing water levels.”