The Jerusalem Chords Bridge or Jerusalem Bridge of Strings, also called the Jerusalem Light Rail Bridge is a cantilever spar cable-stayed bridge at the entrance to the city of Jerusalem, Israel, designed by the Spanish architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava. The bridge is used by Jerusalem Light Rail's Red Line, which began service on August 19, 2011. Incorporated in the structure is a glass-sided pedestrian bridge enabling pedestrians to cross from Kiryat Moshe to the Jerusalem Central Bus Station.
The bridge was designed to add a defining visual element to the Jerusalem "skyline" at the entrance to the western city, and to carry a light rail system, expected to solve some of the city's traffic problems. For Calatrava the bridge is "also the excuse to create a major plaza, to give character and unity to this delicate place".
Similar to Calatrava's Puente del Alamillo in Seville, Spain, the bridge makes use of an angled cantilever tower to absorb some of the load and reduce the number of cable stays needed. The bridge consists of a single pylon counterbalancing a 160 metre span with lengths of cables, making a dramatic architectural statement. While this is Calatrava's 40th bridge, it is the first he has designed to carry both train and pedestrian traffic.
A striking feature of the bridge is a single 118-meter high mast supported by 66 steel cables arranged in a parabolic shape which develops three-dimensionally in space, making it the tallest structure in Jerusalem at the time of its completion. The exterior of the bridge is mostly clad in Jerusalem stone, with steel, glass and concrete detailing. Dubbed "Jerusalem's first shrine of modern design" by Time Magazine, the bridge has become a tourist attraction.
The form of the bridge resemble a tent in the desert or a harp, with the cables as the strings, symbolising King David's harp, according to Calatrava, others interpret the looming pylon as the bust of a long-necked bird, a human arm or an arrow caught in a bow.