Two landscape architects (Robert Holden and Tom Turner) discuss the urban design and landscape architectural aspects of the London Garden Bridge proposal. We like the idea of a bridge-which-is-more-than-just-a-crossing but agree with local residents’ that it is in the wrong place. It should be a greenway and it should be part of the London-wide greenway scheme currently described as the All London Green Grid. See comments from Thames Central Open Space and from the Coin Street Residents. We don’t know how the Temple-Station-to-Coin-Street location was selected but wish there had been a full landscape architectural assessment before the promoters rushed ahead. Our tentative conclusion is that a garden crossing between the two Blackfriars bridges would have been better. It would be much cheaper and less visually intrusive. Nor would the nearby river crossings be a problem – because the Garden Bridge is conceived more as a destination than as a contribution to London’s transport infrastructure.
A Battersea location is also considered – and we wish they were proposing a bridge-which-is-more-than-just-a-crossing on the shortlist for Nine Elms. We encourage landscape architects to enter the Folly For London competition to make better use of £60m of public funds.
The landscape scenic quality assessment used in the above video can be found in a blog post on Landscape, Seascape and Townscape Assessment.