A red pedestrian bridge has opened over the Regents Canal linking Coal Drops Yard with the rest of the King’s Cross estate.
It’s also just a few yards from the existing wide bridge, so seems possibly superfluous, but the existing bridge is occasionally shared with road vehicles, and the pavement space was getting busy at times, so a new pedestrian bridge was commissioned.
It’s also a bridge with a couple of nods to local history.
It sits pretty much on the same spot as an old railway bridge that used to be here until the 1920s, that could bring coal from the mainline into the coal works that stood behind King’s Cross station.
An older bridge was built around 1821, so this pedestrian replacement is a continuance of a 200-year-old route over the canal.
The name of the new bridge, Esperance was chosen by local schoolchildren from the King’s Cross Academy primary school who found that there used to be an Esperance Club nearby set up by Suffragettes to give young girls an education and teach them skills.
This is the second design, after an earlier glass bridge proposal from Thomas Heatherwick was rejected, as the Heatherwick design lived up to the architect’s custom of doubling the price of anything he touches.
he design we’ve got was instead by Moxon Architects, who have looked back at the industrial architecture of the area, and the red bridge does have an air of a railway bridge to it. A particularly nice effect is how the diagonal trusses appear to peel away from the balustrade.
At night, the bridge will be lit by downlighters built into the diagonal trusses which should highlight the structural design.