Futuristic Swansea Slip Bridge design splits opinion on landmark's future
IT is an architect's vision for what could be built at Swansea's Slip Bridge site — and it is certainly generating plenty of interest.
The modern glass box structure projecting out over the beach from the St Helen's bridge abutments would offer stunning views of Swansea Bay — and its design is certainly generating plenty of view among Evening Post readers.
Since the idea appeared in the Post and on our website — www.thisissouthwales.co.uk — dozens of people have written to the paper and left messages on the site.
Thoughts so far have been mixed.
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One website user, going by the name of arnoldlane, wrote: "Cardiff has a beautiful shopping centre, Swansea is considering spending money on a bridge going nowhere. Swansea, hello we are living in the past."
Another user — Hadoken848 — said: "OK, it looks like one of those airport bridges, or one of those bridges over a motorway leading to a service station.
Not to mention it has as much artistic flair as the rest of the garbage Swansea produces.
"Oh look, another right angle four-sided structure in Swansea. How interesting!"
Adding: "Just put the old bridge back, this is a joke." A reader called hacker_jack described it as "ridiculous and expensive".
But the design does have its supporters.
One website user — gabbs101 — said: "I think the design is great, exactly what Swansea needs, would be nice to see something modern and well designed in this city, all people do is complain about, its too modern, its not in keeping with this and that.
"Every time this city gets a opportunity to build something new, why do we have to make it like it was built and designed a 100 years ago. Wouldn't surprise me if the council built a Tesco's on top the bridge."
The striking cantilevered structure was the brainchild of Swansea architects Hyde and Hyde, in collaboration with students from the University of Bath and the Welsh School of Architecture.
A spokeswoman for Hyde and Hyde said the project was designed to get people "reflecting on the beauty" of Swansea's historic structures.
She added: "It was also an opportunity for architectural students from Cardiff and Bath to work with a local progressive architectural practice and suggest new exciting ways in which the structures could be reused for the benefit of communities."
The Slip Bridge at St Helen's stood for almost 90 years before being removed in 2004 — prompting a storm of protest.
The 130 ton iron span now sits on the foreshore near the recreation ground, while the stone abutments remain on either side of Mumbles Road.
A long-running campaign has been calling for the bridge to be restored — or at least replaced with a replica.