Triple Bridge, Ljubljana
The Triple Bridge is probably the most unusual and the most frequently crossed bridge in Ljubljana. It connects the main square and a newer part of town with the Old Town and the Market, what makes it an area with the highest fluctuation of people. It got its final image when Joze Plecnik in 1931 added the side pedestrian bridges tothe existing main one. Offering you a view of the river Ljubljanica, Old Town, main square and the Market, Triple Bridge is a perfect place to stop and feel the city.
The Triple Bridge can also be called the Old Bridge since thefirst bridge on the same spot was mentioned as early as 1280 and named Spital Bridge. It was wooden and served as an entrance to the fortified medieval town of Ljubljana. Later in the future it was also named the Lower Bridge, since another one was built around 180 meters upstream of the Ljubjanica river, today known as Shoemakers Bridge.
The Lower Bridge suffered damage in fire in 1657 and was thus renovated afterwards. The new acquisition of the renovation was a wooden cross, most likely thought to protect the bridge from future disasters. Because the pedlars used a sanctuary lamp that stood in front of the cross for lighting their tobacco, the cross was removed by angry church authorities and taken to the Church of St. Francis standing on the main square, so the story goes.
During the nineteenth century, more precisely in 1842, the wooden bridge was replaced by a new one made of stone, that still today forms the present central bridge of the three. Since it was built in honor of Archduke Charles Franz it got a new name, the Franz Bridge (Francev most). Still today you can see an inscription on the pedestal of the bridge: To the Archduke Franz Charles. 1842. City.
In 1895 a strong earthquake damaged numerous buildings in Ljubljana but luckily the Franz Bridge remains intact. In 1929 the architect Joze Plecnik was entrusted to widen it due to increased traffic and a tram line crossing it. He decided to keep the central bridge and to add pedestrian bridges on either side. Two staircases leading down to the embankment of the river were added to each of the pedestrian bridges, which gives an impression of portals and a Mediterranean touch that Plecnik wanted to give Ljubljana. With the two pedestrian bridges and the balustrades, the bridge got the name Triple Bridge and was finished in 1932.