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Michael D. Stutz

Proposal for Artistic Enhancements for the US 1/64 Pedestrian Greenway Bridge

Bowstring Vines

I propose installing flowing steel vines that frame each entrance to the bowstring pedestrian bridge. Growing from the ground beneath the abutments, then undulating along the top cord of the bowstrings, the vines organically connect the bridge and pedestrians to the surrounding natural environment.

Passing through the entrances, one will enjoy the cast shadows and movement of the vines, which remain safely enclosed behind handrails and vinyl fencing. Motorists will notice how the installation gracefully frames the powerful arch of the bowstring spans, while literally joining the bridge to the earth.

Built from premium grade 316 stainless steel sheet, the vine sculptures will be resistant to corrosive auto exhaust and weather extremes, yet strong and light weight enough to be supported using clamps and bolts attached to the fence rails and bowstring cords. The leaves will have a medium luster finish that reflects their surroundings, while neutrally blending with the metallized zinc and black vinyl of the bridge. The sculptures’ only maintenance will be pressure washing during the bridge’s periodically scheduled cleanings.

Except for the small group of leaves above the central bridge pier, the sculptures are contained above the abutment slopes and sides of the roadway, therefore installation will not require extensive lane closures. By heightening our awareness of the delicate balance between progress and nature, the Bowstring Vines will bring a flowing movement and presence to the pedestrian bridge. They will be an iconic, greeting presence, that marks the Cary community as a place where people and nature come together to flourish and grow.

Tell us what you think about this proposal.