Brick beams have been widely used in construction due to their strength, durability, and aesthetic appeal. By embedding steel reinforcing bars into a series of bricks arranged in a specific pattern, these elements form horizontal load-bearing structures that distribute the weight and forces that act on a building. However, it is difficult to find brick beams with excessively large spans, in order to avoid long-term structural problems. Instead, they mostly come in the form of simple lintels, which can be easier to handle.
With a length of 16.2 meters and an impressive clear span of 15.8 meters, CEBRA architects have collaborated with the Randers Tegl group, the largest brick supplier in Scandinavia, to complete the construction of probably the longest brick beam to date. This exterior beam is accompanied by a 13-meter-span interior “sister” beam and is located above the main entrance to the Danish Crown’s new headquarters in Randers, Denmark, extending freely between two of the building’s wings. The longest beam is made up of almost 4,200 bricks – its height is made up of 25 rows of bricks, equivalent to 1.6 meters, and its edge consists of 4 bricks.