Edina, Minn., Jan. 29, 2020 – The City of Edina and consultant Kimley-Horn received an Honor Award from the Minnesota chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC/MN) for the new pedestrian bridges at Centennial Lakes Park.
ACEC/MN’s Engineering Excellence Awards recognize engineering achievements that exhibit the highest degree of merit and ingenuity. Entries were judged based on originality and innovation; future value to the engineering profession; social, economic and sustainable design considerations; and complexity. Ten Grand Awards and 17 Honor Awards were presented in the 2019-2020 program.
In late 2018 and early 2019, two pedestrian bridges were replaced at the park, 7499 France Ave. S. The original bridges were designed as architectural features of the park and included steel lattice arches and accent lighting, but were not ADA compliant and included 12 steep steps on each side, making them inaccessible for wheelchairs, strollers and maintenance vehicles. The bridges created an access barrier, requiring staff and patrons to travel around the entire 10-acre pond to get to the other side. Maintenance of the bridges had become more expensive and time consuming as they approached more than 20 years of service.
Kimley-Horn worked with the City’s Engineering and Parks & Recreation staff to create a design that evokes old-world charm common throughout the park and includes details that recall the original iconic bridges, including ornamental railings, pendant lights and metal trim. The bridge design provides a wider deck to accommodate park patrons and maintenance vehicles. The bridge and approach trails were woven into the existing park landscape with minimal impact to existing mature trees. Beyond the functional benefits the bridges provide, their design complements the park aesthetic and they seem to grow organically out of the landscape, appearing to be original elements of the park.
“The project has been very well received by the community and has quickly become part of the established park landscape,” said Centennial Lakes Park General Manager Tom Shirley. “Long-term patrons have expressed great appreciation for the City of Edina’s initiative to improve the bridges and provide convenient and accessible crossing of the pond.”
The award was presented Jan. 24, at ACEC/MN’s 53rd-annual awards ceremony at Minneapolis Marriott Northwest. It was accepted by representatives of Kimley-Horn, Shirley and Engineering Director Chad Millner. For more information on Centennial Lakes Park, visit CentennialLakesPark.com. For more information on the ACEC/MN Engineering Excellence Awards, visit acecmn.org.