Tukwila Urban Center Bridge
City of Tukwila
Prime Consultant: KPFF Consulting Engineers (Structural, Civil, and Plumbing Engineering)
Landscape Architecture: KPG
Lighting Design: KPG
Bridge length: 220 feet
The Green River flows out of the Cascade Mountains through communities in Washington state including Tukwila, a suburban city bordering Seattle at its northern edge. The river is important for salmon spawning and has traditionally been a tribal fishing river in the Pacific Northwest.
The Tukwila Urban Center Bridge celebrates the history of the Green River, protects the local natural habitat, and offers a welcoming pedestrian connection between the commercial district in the west and the eastern part of the city.
The form of the bridge was inspired by tribal canoes, and is defined by the 45-foot high bowstring arch and the 16-foot wide concrete deck. On the edges of the crossing path the bridge dematerializes and opens to the water flowing below with stainless steel grills to reduce shade and open the surface to sunlight. This design element enhances the natural flow of the river and is important to create a bright welcoming habitat for salmon to swim downstream to the Pacific Ocean. The project is key to implementing the land use and transportation goals of the Tukwila Urban Center Plan and creates an enjoyable walking and biking experience.