Tectonic Studies on Wooden Arched Bridge

As the Case of Span in Chinese Wooden Construction Tradition


Medium: conference paper
Language(s): en 
Conference: Third International Congress on Construction History, Brandenburg University of Technology Cottbus, Germany , 20th-24th May 2009
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Strong tradition of Chinese wooden structure has been noticed by architectural academia for decades, while many existing interpretations were based upon stylistic architecture theory, so that the scientific and tectonic issue of this tradition has not be expressed well. This situation very much influenced Chinese architects to learn the wooden structure as the cultural tradition and transformed into the application of modern architecture in China. In order to change this situation, we turn to the tectonic approach. Structure issue of how to make the span Chinese wooden construction tradition became focus of our wooden tectonic studies. As the case of span in Chinese wooden construction tradition, this study is focused on the wooden arched bridge, be described as “Rainbow Bridge” in some case, a special ancient construction in wood and has been used widely historically, can still be fund in the region of the Southern Zhejiang and Northern Fujian Provinces. Authors made decent inventory for this important culture heritage of Chinese wooden construction on the site, after the collection of information from the site, a historical / environmental and typological study has been made, in order to explore the relation between the wooden structure form and local cultural / environmental definition. Furthermore, authors made the profound studies on structure, material, and construction process of the structure forms with the built wooden models, which express the technique element of the wooden arched bridge in the analytical way. Based upon the scientific analysis, authors have been able to explore the construction process of the bridge, and also the evolution of typological development to answer the made of this special bridge type. With those studies, authors tried to re-evaluate the meaning of tectonic culture and mountainous human habitat culture on the wooden construction.

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