Gustave Magnel 13th Gold Medal

(10-12-2019) Laureate Laurent Ney bestowed with the Gustave Magnel 13th Gold Medal for his realisation of the bridge De Lentloper in Nijmegen (Netherlands).

Lentloperbrug Laurent Ney


The Association of Engineers of Ghent University (AIG) and the Faculty of Engineering and Architecture award the 'Golden Medal Gustave Magnel' every fifth year to a designer of a structure, which is deemed to be an important and remarkable application of reinforced or prestressed concrete. After a thorough evaluation of the candidate structures, the Scientific Jury of the Gustave Magnel Gold Medal 2014-2019 unanimously agreed upon the laureate of the 2019 Gustave Magnel Gold Medal: Laurent Ney, designer of the Lentloper bridge.

Motivation by the Scientific Jury:

The Lentloperbrug is more than a bridge. The structure is a harmonious combination of architectural shape and structural concept, resulting in an inviting and well-conceived integration in its environment. The omega-shaped deck is converting the bridge to a three-dimensional innovative structure, including flavours of structural shells and arches. By means of a three-dimensional flow of prestressing forces, the structure is optimized towards its minimal structural depth, making it a remakrable and inspiring example of form-finding.
The four pairs of inclined columns together with the open omega shaped deck create an internal space. The holistic architectural concept has pushed the structural design to find innovative solutions, leading to a monolithic semi-integral bridge that is easy to read. The materials choices, including high strenght concrete, match very well with the structural concept. Technical challenges linked to construction phases have been nicely overcome and incorporated in the final design.
The bridge becomes part of the environment and invites people to meet and enjoy this remarkable location. The Lentloperbrug nicely shows that even in a relatively small-scale project, a prestressed concrete structure can be designed in a very clever and innovative way.

Lentloperbrug 1 Lentloperbrug 2

Gustave Magnel 13th Gold Medal

The medal is awarded to the desginer of a civil engineering structure, built and completed within the five years' period, and which might be considered as an important en remarkable application of reinforced and/or prestressed concrete. Neither the nationality of the designer nor the country where the structure has been built, is important. The structure must be completed in the considered period of five years.


Medaille Magnel 1 Medaille Magnel 2

Bridge De Lentloper

The Lentloper bridge is designed for cyclists and pedestrians while cars are considered a seldom seen guest. The bridge is a sculpture whose 'inner space' is as important as the upper deck. Different levels on the bridge separate vehicles from pedestrians. The central carriageway rises towards the middle of the bridge, while the foot- and cycleways at the sides become lower towards the middle tof the bridge. Transversely sloping surfaces connect the levels. This forms and omega-shaped cross section that varies along the length of the bridge. With two transverse connecting platforms under the carriageway to allow cyclists and pedestrians to change sides, De Lentloper represents a new, extraordinary type of bridge.


Lentloperbrug 3 Lentloperbrug 4

Laureate Laurent Ney

Laurent Ney (°1964, Thionville) is a civil engineer architect. He was educated at Belgian and German universities. Between 1995 and 2001, he lectured in construction stability at the Lambert Lombard Higher Institute for Architecture in Liège. He became a lecturer at the Université LIbre de Bruxelles in 2005. From 1989 to 1996 he worked at the Greisch architectural consultancy in Liège.

In 1996, Laurent founded the Ney & Partners engineering office in Brussels and Luxembourg. In 2012, Ney & Partners started an office in Tokyo and recently sister companies were opened in Bordeaux and Delft. Ney & Partners is a team of engineers and architects working on the conception of structure and infrastructure. The company currently works with an international team of some 120 employees on projects in Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, France, the UK, Morocco and Japan.

Numerous brigde designs by Ney & Partners have been awarded national and international prizes. In 2011, he received the Charles Lemaire Prize from the Royal Academy of Belgium. In 2013, he won the Culture Prize of the University of Leuven 2013-2014. In the Netherlands, the design of 'De Oversteek' and 'De Lentloper' won several times both professional and public awards. More recently, 'Parkbrug Spoor Noord' in Antwerp, won the European Steel Bridge Award in 2018. That same year they won the Tanaka Award and the Japan Association of Artists, Craftsmen and Architects Award for the Dejima Footbridge in Nagasaki.

Laurent Ney's approach to engineering is based on research: optimisation and form-finding. Through the realisation of more than hundred bridges and numerous special structures, he can boast a wealth of practical experience, which he combines with extensive theoretical knowledge.

Gustave Magnel

The late professor Gustave Magnel was born in Essen, Belgium, on the 15th of September 1889 and graduated as a civil engineer from Ghent University in 1912. In 1919 he was appointed chief assistant in the Laboratory for Strength of Materials at Ghent University and in 1937 he became a full professor there, teaching courses on the design of concrete structures and structural analysis. Professor Magnel was an active member of numerous scientific committees and was awarded several Belgian and international distinctions. The laboratory he founded in 1926 has been named after him after his unexpected death on July 5th 1955.