John A. Roebling, Engineer
Spanning the Ohio River
Cincinnati OH / Covington KY
In 1866 when the John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge opened it was the longest suspension bridge in the world. It was completed just a year after Abraham Lincoln’s death.
John A. Roebling was also the designer of the better known Brooklyn Bridge in New York (1883).
Still in use today by both pedestrians and automobiles, it is amazing to think that automobiles were not even around when the bridge was built. Henry Ford did not sell his first car, the Quadricycle, until 1896, and the assembly line for the Model T was first used in 1913 – 47 years after the bridge was built.
Daniel Libeskind, Architect
Visited January 26, 2013
Just across the river from Cincinnati, at the foot of Roebling’s suspension bridge, is The Ascent. This somewhat squatty spiral building is clad in a Tetris like composition of blue glass and white panels. Behind this architectural skin are 19 stories of residential condominiums, with additional space for parking and amenities.
Unfortunately located slightly behind other taller generic brown brick hotel and office buildings from the river, you have to be on the eastern side of the Cincinnati riverfront to see the dramatic Ascent from across the river. Also unfortunately the facade visible from the river has balconies of different widths tacked on to the outer curved face. I believe the inner curved facade facing downtown Covington is the more interesting facade – and the most hidden until you are right at the building.
From Downtown Cincinnati, you can actually walk across Roebling’s Bridge to visit this monument. Roebling is the engineer that also designed the Brooklyn Bridge in New York.