Searching for Calatrava


The Calatrava bridge near Reggio Emilia

You don’t have to go to Europe to find the works of Santiago Calatrava, the Spanish architect known for his creative bridges and award-winning architecture. We first noticed his work in Seville, Spain where we saw the beautiful cantilever bridge that he designed for their 1992 Expo. But we’ve also seen his work in Redding, California where there is the Sundial Bridge at Turtle Bay, built so pedestrians and cyclists can cross the Sacramento River and access other areas of the park and a new walking/biking trail.

Ray Bouknight / / CC BY

The Sundial Bridge in Redding, California
Reggio has three Calatrava bridges designed as the new gateway to the city. You can find them near the part of autostrada A1 that travels east-west, from Bologna to Milan. It’s not easy to get out there without a car, and when you’re in your car, you don’t have the chance to stop and admire the beauty of each bridge. So, the best way to really view all three bridges is to ride a bike or walk. We found a bus (the #5 to Mancasale) that gets close enough for a short walk toward the bridges. Although the area is not that pedestrian friendly, it’s possible to get close enough to see all three bridges for better photos. We found a way to walk across the middle bridge, the Ponte Centrale, which has a nice sidewalk. While walking across the bridge, we spotted the next Calatrava project for Reggio, the new train station for high speed trains. This ultra-modern station is scheduled to open this coming June, 2013.
Another view of two bridges
Although the setting for these bridges isn’t our favorite, suddenly spotting one, then a second, and finally a third Calatrava bridge, is impressive. They certainly make a statement for the town of Reggio Emilia. The city government must have been happy with the project because they are spending a bundle to have Calatrava design their new train station.
The new train station Mediopadana in Reggio Emilia
Not everyone is thrilled with the projects. Our neighbors across the street feel that it was a big expense for this somewhat small city. They don’t think that Reggio has enough people to fill the fast trains. Like many Italians, they feel that the bureaucrats don’t know what they’re doing. But, whatever happens, Reggio will have the best looking train station in Italy.

Walking the bridge

Walking the bridge

For an amazing video of the Milwaukee Art Museum entrance, click below
Milwaukee Art Museum

About msraaka

I am an artist, writer and desktop publishing consultant living in the Pacific Northwest. After our first visit to Italy, my husband Bob and I have found ways to spend more and more time there and other countries in Europe. We love to travel, but especially to stay in one area and get a better sense of place. I love learning languages, so I continue to study Italian, French and Spanish so I can communicate a bit more with the locals. Even learning the basic greetings can make a big difference.
This entry was posted in Emilia Romagna, Travel and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Searching for Calatrava

  1. NaidaGee says:

    I just love the government that’s willing to pay extra to bequeath something of beauty to future generations.

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