Flickr Widget

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Fifty years from now: Santiago Calatrava

Santiago Calatrava
Santiago Calatrava Valls (1951- ) is a Spanish architect, sculptor and structural engineer. He was born in Benimàmet, which is now considered part of Valencia, Spain. He received an undergraduate degree in architecture from the Polytechnic University of Valencia and did post-graduate work in urbanism. In 1975 he enrolled at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich to study civil engineering. After receiving his doctorate in 1981, he opened an architectural and engineering firm in Zürich. He now has offices in several major cities around the world.

His early work was primarily bridges and train stations, although in later years he has designed towers and skyscrapers. Some of his most famous designs are the Montjüic Communications Tower in Barcelona, Spain, the Allen Lambert Galleria in Toronto, Canada, the Quadracci Pavilion at the Milwaukee Art Museum and the Turning Torso tower in Malmö, Sweden. Calatrava's work has already won tremendous acclaim, and he will undoubtedly be viewed fifty years from now as one of the most important architects of this era.

From mhhcelebration.com and smu.edu 

Montjüic Communications Tower - Barcelona, Spain
en.petrophoto.net
Allen Lambert Galleria - Toronto, Canada
canadiandesignresource.ca
Quadracci Pavilion - Milwaukee, Wisconsin (USA)
bluffton.edu
Turning Torso - Malmö, Sweden
sonachavda.com

In 1999 Calatrava was commissioned to design a bridge spanning the Trinity River in Dallas, Texas. Construction began in 2007, and the bridge was officially opened in March of this year. It is significant because it is the first vehicular bridge Calatrava has designed in the United States. The bridge, named the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge after the daughter of Texas oil magnate H. L. Hunt, Jr., is affectionately known to Dallasites as "Large Marge" and is destined to become the iconic landmark of the city.


Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge - Dallas, Texas (USA)
frtv.org
Another view of "Large Marge" - Dallas, Texas (USA)
pressclubdallas.com

My daughter and I took the boys for a drive over the new bridge a few days ago. Grandson #1, who's two-and-a-half now, was somewhat impressed, although he was very distracted by the fabulous kite-flying event taking place on the riverbanks on both sides of the bridge. Grandson #2, who just turned one in December, was enthralled by the kites and didn't even notice that the bridge existed. :)

Here is a beautiful video of the activities commemorating the official opening of "Large Marge." I think you'll enjoy seeing the bridge...and how Texans celebrate a proud moment...with speeches, photograhy, food, fireworks, and dancing to the music of Lyle Lovett.



youplusdallas.com

10 comments:

  1. I love a good bridge, and the Galleria is inspiring! Trust the kidlets to love the kites, they are inspiring too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have to admit that the kites were so beautiful they even distracted me. There were dozens and dozens of them in every size, shape and color...just dazzling.

      Delete
  2. Dana,
    You always write the most interesting posts! And I've seen that bridge...probably when I was on my way to visit Joe at the old Mid2Mod store! Haven't driven across it yet, but we are coming to Dallas end of June for the restaurant show...maybe then!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Crystal, I'm so glad you enjoy my posts. When you're back in Dallas in June, maybe you can take a closer look at the bridge. Hope you'll have time to visit Joe in the new store too.

      Delete
  3. What gorgeous buildings! And wow, what a beatiful bridge! I can definetely see Calatrava beinging honored for many years to come...Large Marge :) Name right out of a Todd Snider song!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Calatrava has won so many awards already that he's almost certain to maintain his stature among the world's greatest architect/engineers. Large Marge is a beautiful addition to the Dallas skyline.

      And, yes, I could imagine Todd Snider singing about Large Marge. :)

      Delete
    2. She was actually a bar owner in his song, but I love the moniker for the bridge!

      Delete
    3. Have you seen the short video he did called The Phoner? I laugh every time I think about it.

      Delete
  4. I love the turning torso building!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isn't it amazing? Wouldn't it be cool to live or work in a building like that?

      Delete