IPO Footbridge

Coimbra, 2021


João Branco + Paula del Río


Marco Silva

Structural Engineering

Struplano Engenharia Lda


© do mal o menos

The project responds to the need of a footbridge connection between 2 buildings of the IPO (Instituto Português de Oncologia) in Coimbra.

Due to endless adaptations, the buildings that are part of the IPO hospital complex are disordered and mischaracterized, evidencing a growing spatial confusion. Exterior finishings and other elements, such as chimneys, ducts and air conditioning systems, are part of the multiple weaknesses of the hospital complex. The appropriation of space in a disordered way caused a conflict between scales, materials and overlays, harmful to its image.

The new footbridge commits to formal simplicity, delicacy and transparency, contrasting with the density and confusion of its background.

The building construction is resumed to the protection of a latticed metallic structure. The absence of direct sunlight allows the use of glass in full vertical envelope. The horizontal envelope is made of zinc.

The final result is an example of what we believe is the correct answer to the successive needs of a hospital complex without a clear basic strategy. Extremely functional, pragmatic and quiet.