Inday Chronicles – Florence
Ponte delle Grazie
Located to the east of the world-famous Ponte Vecchio, the bridge sometimes appears to glow in the setting sun.
The original Ponte alle Grazie was constructed in 1227. It was rebuilt in 1345 with nine arches, making it the oldest and longest bridge in Florence. Two of the arches were filled in during 1347 in order to widen piazza dei Mozzi. Structures were built on the bridge, much as can be seen on the modernPonte Vecchio but these were eventually abandoned and were removed in 1876 to make way for railway track.
In August 1944, the bridge was destroyed by the Nazi army as they withdrew before the advancing Allied forces in World War II. Following the end of the War, a competition was held to create a new design for a replacement bridge. The winning design, the work of a group formed of architects includingGiovanni Michelucci, Edoardo Said, Riccardo Gizdolich and Danilo Know and an engineer, Piero Melucci, feature four slender piers with thin archesbetween them. The new bridge was completed in 1953.
While the new design is harmonious with the surrounding city, its modern design and construction materials do not reflect its predecessor.