Iconic Engineering by Wayne Shipley, United Kingdom
The Millennium Link was an ambitious £84.5m project with the objective of restoring navigability across Scotland on the historic Forth & Clyde Canal and Union Canal, providing a corridor of regenerative activity through central Scotland. A major challenge faced, was to link the Forth and Clyde Canal, which lay 35m (115ft) below the level of the Union Canal. Historically, the two canals had been joined at Falkirk by a flight of 11 locks that stepped down across a distance of 1.5km, but these has been dismantled in 1933, breaking the link. What was required was a method of connecting these two canals by way of a boat lift. British Waterways were keen to present a visionary solution taking full advantage of the opportunity to create a truly spectacular and fitting structure that would suitably commemorate the Millennium and act as an iconic symbol for years to come.