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MX3D Bridge

©Adriaan De Groot
©Adriaan De Groot

Joris Laarman Lab









Amsterdam, Netherlands



Completed 2018

Great strives have been made in recent years in large scale 3d printing for the building industry. Designers Joris Laarman Lab have collaborated with MX3D to develop a 3d printed stainless steel footbridge which spans over one of the oldest and most famous canals in Amsterdam. The engineers from Arup were asked to provide structural consultation for this ongoing research, in which Karamba3D was key to the schematic design process.

©Olivier De Gruijter
©Joris Laarman
©Thijs Wolzak
©Tim Geurtjens

Text from Arup:

The 3D-printed MX3D pedestrian bridge is the product of the innovative collaboration of Dutch technology startup MX3D and designers Joris Laarman Lab. With Arup involved as lead structural engineer, the project produces a fully functional 12m steel bridge with 3D robotic printers. This new technique provides new opportunities and architectural freedom to designers and engineers and has huge potential to reduce the amount of material needed to make large structures.

Arup worked in close collaboration with Joris Laarman to come up with the design in 2016, with the team providing structural consulting and defining a testing sequence to support design by experiments and prove the structural capacity of the bridge. In addition, Arup is giving technical advice on site, helping MX3D in the ongoing process with the municipality and coordinating with other technical partners.


A parametric design workflow has been developed to integrate structural analysis with the shape-finding process of the bridge. Karamba3D has been used at the early conceptual design stage as part of this workflow to provide FEM calculation smoothly within the digital framework.

To realise the project, MX3D has set up an innovative collaboration between a large group of partners: Autodesk, ArcelorMittal, Arup, Force Technology, Imperial College London, Air Liquide, ABB Robotics, Heijmans, Lenovo, The Alan Turing Institute and Lloyds Register Foundation. The public partners are TU Delft, University of Twente, AMS Institute (Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Studies) and the Municipality of Amsterdam. Sponsors are STV, Oerlikon, FARO and Plymovent. The Visitor Center is supported by the Dutch VSB Fund.

Digital simulation of the bridge using Karamba3D to find an optimal shape ©Arup

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