Alternative “Garden Bridge” proposal revealed

Urban designer Crispin Wride has drawn up a cut-price alternative to Thomas Heatherwick’s London Garden Bridge project which would create a series of landscaped “stepping stones” across the River Thames.

Wride’s proposal, which he has sent to London’s mayor Sadiq Khan, uses redundant piers already standing in the river between Blackfriars road and railway bridges.

The structure, which he calls Blackfriars Garden Islands Bridge, would also be attached to those two crossings taking the form of leaf-shaped “islands”.

These would be linked by a walkway but could also be accessed individually from the road bridge, creating multiple potential routes across the river.

Each 45m x 30m platform could have its own identity and could contain small kiosks housing cafes or galleries.

Wride said: “It would create a dynamic new experience of crossing the river, not a continuous uneventful route from one side to the other but a series of linked garden islands and pavilions.

“This would enhance the existing awkward space left between the road and rail bridges at Blackfriars and add four new spectacular public spaces for London, poised above the River Thames.”