Thomas Ponds

Complex Projects

Paso del Norte Border Bridge

The redesign of the Paso del Norte Border Bridge is the result of a 6-month investigation into the US-Mexico border region and tries to undermine the division between the two countries that is caused by the border fence and politics.
The century long history of cross-border collaboration between the twin city of El Paso-Ciudad Juarez has stopped completely in the last decade due to post-9/11 sentiment in the US and rising cartel violence in Mexico. This has resulted in a city with a physical border fence in its middle that can only be crossed through an obtrusive border bridge where people wait in long queues for custom and security checks.

The redesign for this bridge questions the existing structure of border control and instead proposes a new type of border infrastructure: a double-layered bridge through which pedestrians, vehicles and trams cross the 400meter wide border ditch, and which instead of being an disruptive element of the city becomes an integrated element of the twin city fabric with a functional and commercial program derived from the existing cross border commerce and collaboration.

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