photos by Nereo Zane
Santiago Calatrava (the Spanish architect who designed Venice's fourth bridge), is quite an accomplished man.
I could compose a big list of the things he's built, but I'll let you google his name instead.
I think you'll be surprised at some of the things you find - many of his bridges are way more extreme than this one. Nevertheless, Calatrava's bridge in Venice is a rather impressive structure. He has incorporated Istrian stone into a fairly minimalist arch of steel and glass
(Istrian stone is a commonly used stone in Venice).
The total length of the bridge is 94 meters.
At the wides point, the bridge is over 9 meters across.
The sweeping arch silhouette is sure to catch people's eye.
One of the unique factors involved with this construction has been the concern that too much weight might cause anchoring points on the shoreline to sink.
Calatrava has received criticism over his bridge's lack of handicap access, while others don't like the style - saying that it doesn't match Venice.
The real question is:
how long will Venice's fourth bridge survive?
After all, the stone Scalzi bridge is the second one in that location, having replaced the first version - which was iron.
A steel bridge was first built at Accademia, it was followed by a wooden one, which was then replaced with another wooden one.
As for the Rialto, well the first span there was a "boat bridge", then three consecutive wood bridges followed (each one being replaced after it collapsed or became unusable), and today's Rialto is a stone version.
Will Calatrava's bridge measure up? Only time will tell.
You can watch the bridge's progress by webcam at: