Jörg Schlaich was born in Germany in 1934. He graduated as an engineer from Stuggart University in 1955 and the Technical University of Berlin in 1959. He also studied in the USA. In 1963 he joined the consulting engineering firm Fritz Leonhard, where he later became a partner. In 1980 in conjunction with Roger Bergermann he founded the engineering firm of Schlaich Bergermann and Partners.
Schlaich’s early work was focused on the design of roofs such as the Olympic Roof in Munich and then thin metal membranes for lighter roofs and for use in solar dishes. He is also the developer of the solar tower (or solar chimney). In working on suspension wire technology Schlaich designed a large number of bridges, particularly pedestrian, where innovative ideas were more readily practised. The Kilkeim Bridge (1987) over the Main Danube Canal, the Necktar Bridge (1990) near Stuttgart and the folding River Horn Bridge (1997) in Kiel Port are exciting examples of such innovation and provided the initiative for many new designers over the following years. Schlaich also worked on one of the first multi span cable stayed bridges,the Ting Kau Bridge (1998) in Hong Kong and the Second Hooghly cable stayed bridge in Calcutta, India.