Foto: Luc Daelemans
Steel Construction Contest 2020 Bridges - Laureate

Cycling through the trees

A tight double circle on steel legs

Cycling through the treetops of the Pijnven in Bosland, in the Belgian municipality of Hechtel-Eksel, is quite something. The 700 metre long route is an initiative by Tourism Limburg and consists of a tight 100 metre diameter double circle connected to the cycle network. The path rises at a gradient of 3-4% to reach a height of 10 m, remains level for 9 metres and then begins its descent. What makes this experience so special is the feeling of interacting with nature, of growing with the trees and ‘floating’ as you rise up off the ground. The 450 unique columns in weather-resistant Corten steel are spaced in turn 1, 2 and 3 metres apart, and symbolise the straight trunks of the pine trees that were once used in the mine. This design ensures that the construction blends in beautifully with its surroundings. The support piles were secured in a point foundation of galvanized screw piles, minimising the impact of the structure on the natural environment.

  • Fietsknooppunt 272, Pijnven, Bosland - Hechtel-Eksel (BE)
    Location
  • Toerisme Limburg - Hasselt
    Client
  • Burolandschap / De Gregorio & Partners - Tongeren
    Architect / Designer
  • BAS - Leuven
    Structural engineering
  • Socotec - Brussel-Bruxelles
    Control agency
  • Smulders - Arendonk
    General contractor
  • Smulders - Arendonk
    Steel contractor
  • Smulders
    Infosteel Members

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