The Naspers Skybridge is a pedestrian link between the CTICC 2 building and the Naspers building. The client tasked the architect with designing a new bridge between the new CTICC 2 building and the NASPERS building. This would aid in daily access for Media24 staff, as they did not have enough parking of their own and could then utilize some of the parking bays in the CTICC buildings. This new bridge had to link CTICC 2’s Second Floor with NASPER’s Fourth floor, roughly 13.5m above the road level.

The architects developed various concepts for the design of the bridge. Inspiration was taken from the shape of a tree, interpreted in different architectural expressions. Through workshops with the client (both CTICC and NASPERS) and the professional team, multiply small-scale physical models were built to convey the different design ideas, including an option of steel laser cut panels that form a sculptural support and leaf-pattern balustrade, and another version with steel support “branches”. Ultimately, the design was refined to form a simple yet “raw” aesthetic, with the architectural and structural logic informing the details. A composite wood decking floor in a staggered pattern was used to enhance the “raw” aesthetic, with Rheinzink roof sheeting chosen for aesthetic and practical reasons due to the slanted and curved roof. Panoramic views of the city can be experienced through the full-height glass façades.

Due to the location of the entrances to the buildings, the bridge curves for about half of its length. This creates an interesting architectural experience as one crosses the bridge, while making it possible to see the bridge’s exterior from the inside. Structurally the challenge was to support the curved section only on two columns, with the end part at the CTICC not being able to be supported by the existing building (thus creating a large cantilever that had to have minimal movement at the façade entry point).

The bridge was always envisaged as being constructed out of steelwork – to allow maximum views to the sides and to enable construction with minimal disruption to the street below. The bridge structure comprised mainly Universal Beam and Column sections, with some angles added to support the flooring and a CHS safety rail for window cleaning.

Engineer Interview

Challenges arose due to the weight of sections, which made moving these sections a challenge during both fabrication and erection. The bridge sections were assembled into just two pieces adjacent to the road, allowing these two large pieces to be erected using a 440t crane during a road closure on a Sunday. The two parts had never been spliced together before erection, with all dimensions being theoretical. The first real fit was therefore on site, and everything fitted perfectly.

Another challenge was erecting the bridge on a windy and rainy day, forcing the contractor to wait for a lull before lifting.

Since the bridge was modelled in 3D, an IFC export was provided to the contractor to aid them in the shop drawing process. In turn, they provided their fabrication model in 3D for approval by the engineer and architect, which ensured that the aesthetic intentions of the professional team could be met.

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Completion date of steelwork October 2018
Completion date of full project March 2019
Tons of structural steel used  
Structural profiles used UB, UC and CHS sections
Completion date of cladding No cladding
Cladding profile/ type used Rheinzink
Cladding area/ coverage and tonnage 165m2
Nominator Anchor Steel Projects
Client/ Developer Cape Town International Convention Centre
Architect Osmond Lange Architects + Planners
Structural Engineer Sutherland
Quantity Surveyor Turner & Townsend
Project Manager Lukhozi Engineers
Main Contractor Superway Construction
Steelwork Contractor Anchor Steel Projects
Steel Erector Anchor Steel Projects
Cladding Supplier Two Oceans Metal
Cladding Contractor Naturally Slate

If you were a part of this project, and your company details are incorrect or missing – please notify the SAISC so that the error can be corrected.