Rob Leslie-Carter, director at Arup, visited University College London (UCL) last week to speak to a group of masters students on the Strategic Management of Projects course about Project Operational Legacy. Using the Garden Bridge as a case study, the students had a tour of the project, its planned operations, and the impact it promises to have on London.
Reflecting on the visit, Rob said: “One of the most fascinating things about the Garden Bridge is the breadth and strength of its future legacy. Its legacy will be many different things to many different people rather than a more prosaic response to a single issue. It will be a critical piece of infrastructure for London, a bridge across the Thames connecting Lambeth and Westminster in a unique way whilst also being a destination in its own right, a catalyst and inspiration for a more walkable London, a city defining landmark, an expression of ambition and design innovation, an educational and social resource, a world class public garden, and who knows what else? Like Dan Pearson’s garden, the legacy of the Garden Bridge will evolve, grow and meander over time as people explore and discover the elements of the bridge most special to them.
“Working on a project with the potential to be all these things is incredibly exciting, but having a multifaceted legacy is also something that challenges people; can a Garden Bridge still be a ‘proper bridge’ or a ‘proper garden’. A central part of the project vision is that the Garden Bridge can’t simply promise to be more than the sum of its parts; every element needs to be excellent and world class in its own right.
“Talking to the students today was brilliant and genuinely insightful; an opportunity to have an open and honest dialogue with a group of very smart and curious people who brought some really useful different perspectives we can take forward on the Garden Bridge project.”
Dr Efrosyni Konstantinou, course director of UCL’s MSc in the Strategic Management of Projects said: “Rob’s contribution to the class was invaluable as the Garden Bridge project is fascinating in terms of the long-term benefits that it can have for London.’