After the Strynefjell road was made into an all-year road and a new road bridge was established next to the original one, the Jølbru bridge has existed as a forgotten gem. The old Jølbru bridge is difficult to discover unless you have local knowledge about this piece of Norwegian road history.
Through all times, one of human’s clearest social forms has expressed itself as circles through community and protection. Especially in the meeting with nature, the circle is a basic social form; for example, in the traditional Sami “gamme” or “lavvo” one is protected against the forces of nature and dangers such as animals and enemies at the same time as one protects the fire and gathers around it. We all have a common universal recollection about gathering around the fire, gathered in a circle for singing and dancing or for afterthought and contemplation.
The old Jøl bridge forms nearly a perfect half-circle. We suggest to have the existing bridge mirrored with a new bridge structure to complete the circle into a clear and common form. With this simple and iconic move, we accomplish the following;
•To strengthen the focus point down towards the canyon so that the dramatic and unique height becomes accessible for a much larger number of people. Today only a few people can experience the large canyon space at the same time.
•To make visible the unique structure of the existing bridge and its’ history as the central element in the landscape. It will therefore be possible to experience the bridge directly from the front.
•To create a ”pothole” which is both spectacular and quiet, where the concentration is directed towards the original bridge and the abyss of the canyon. A place is created for concentrated experience and contemplation together with other people.
With the new bridge, a continuous movement/round-trip from the parking and back is created so that one does not have to go back and forth as is the case today. The difference in height on the two sides of the new bridge is not greater than that universal access can be secured throughout the entire structure.