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Skyway: The Latest Architecture and News

Places Journal Explores the Past, Present and Future of Urban Skyways

09:30 - 28 May, 2016
Places Journal Explores the Past, Present and Future of Urban Skyways, Part of Calgary's "+15" network of skybridges. Image © Wikimedia user Qyd licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5 (adapted)
Part of Calgary's "+15" network of skybridges. Image © Wikimedia user Qyd licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5 (adapted)

When hearing the word “skybridge” or “elevated walkway,” what often comes to mind is a narrow, glassed-in pathway perhaps crossing between two office buildings or hospital concourses; a narrow artery whose only purpose seems to be keeping people dry and away from cars as they walk from meeting to meeting. But this wasn’t always the case - in the 1960s, skyways were seen as radical urban inventions that would bring city circulation into the 3rd dimension. Championed in the United States by architect Victor Gruen, following ideals espoused by both CIAM and Team 10 in Europe, the skyway movement took hold in cities all over the world with varying degrees of success, but rarely with the fluid connections between levels originally envisioned by its designers.