» SK, Bratislava – The SNP Bridge and Unique View from Its Top
SK, Bratislava – The SNP Bridge and Unique View from Its Top
The unique SNP bridge and its noticeable structure on top resembling a flying saucer is one of the most popular and most photographed landmarks in Bratislava. Today it naturally belongs to the city, however, this wasn’t always true.
The Slovak National Uprising Bridge is certainly the most controversial bridge in Slovakia. Despite it has to unite the city it still divides Bratislava’s population for some consider it a technical miracle or a landmark of Bratislava, others perceive it being just a demonstration of power, ego and progress of local society. To make its construction viable a very beautiful part of the historical center had to be demolish including precious Jewish synagogue adjacent to the St Martin’s Dome.
From construction until present
Its construction began in the year 1967 and only few years later it became operational, in 1972. It was the time when Bratislava desperately needed to intertwine the city center with today its largest housing development in Slovakia, Petrzalka. It is probably meaningless to argue whether the bridge has to stand where it stands or if a significant part of Bratislava really had to be demolished. Rather we should focus on more positive information on this really unique building. Considering its technical features, this steel bridge hangs only on one pylon , which is admired all around the world. It is almos 431 meters long and 95 meters high. There are two two-lane roads on the bridge and below pathways for bikers and walkers along both sides of the bridge. Another interesting fact is that since it was opened there were needed no service works or some significant adjustments. The only problem was discovered already during the construction and it was corrected. It was a statics calculation error corrected by an additional prop on the left bank of the Danube. Since then, only usual service is required. For long the bridge had name The New Bridge , however, on 68 anniversary of the SNP it has its original name, thus, we speak of its as of the SNP Bridge. The bridge has also many awards and primacies such as the building of the century in Slovakia which it received in 2001 in the bridges category; it used to be the longest asymmetrical hanging bridge with one pylon in the world.
Bratislava on sleeve
The bridge catches one’s sight immediately for its unique design. Its most interesting part not only for the inhabitants of Bratislava, but, and mostly, for visitors is its restaurant and a unique view located on the top of the pylon ; the restaurant resembles a flying saucer. Firstly you have to get to the pylon located on the Petrzalka riverside of the Danube and on the right side of the pylon there is an emergency stairs, which is usually closed to public, on the left side is hidden a fast elevator which will take you up in 45 seconds. There is a fee when enter the elevator but it is subtracted from your bill if you decide to eat in local restaurant. The restaurant is situated in 85 meters above the ground and another 35 higher, or seven meters will get you on a observation platform. Having a good weather you may see not only Bratislava but Danube and a part of Austria as well. You may also use a telescope, for free and few board around you contain information of what you see.
Zajímavosti v okolí
Nearby the bridge there are other interesting sights worth visiting such as theJanko Kral’s Garden ,the oldest public park in central Europe. If you decide to walk along the bridge to visit historical center you shouldn’t miss a visit of the St Martin’s Dome where 18 coronations took place, or you may visit the old town hall or the Church of St Elizabeth commonly known as the Blue Church . Despite the historical center in Bratislava is relatively small, there are numerous interesting sights (such as the statue of rubbernecker, Napoleon or a modern bank of Danube and Eurovea, smaller or larger squares, theMichael’s tower , various museums, Bratislava Castle ...). It is only up to you what would you prefer; whether you just walk about the city and enjoy atmosphere of a small big city on Danube, or you carefully plan your journey and visit only what you consider interesting. Still, I wish you nice moments in Bratislava.
Text: O. Maňáková
Photo: O. Mažgút, M. Koczová, J. Výborný, O. Maňáková
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