The Venta bridge

marco10

Liepāja, Latvia

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The old Venta bridge was built in one year time from 1873 – 1874. It was built under the order of Kurzeme governor Paul von Lilienfeld and its expenses were 120 thousand roubles. The bridge has eight powerful piers, seven brick vaults join them. The length of the bridge is 500 feet, width 36 feet ( 1 foot = 30, 48 cm). At night six old lanterns are light up the bridge. The author of the bridge project and supervising engineer was structural engineer F.Staprani but the author of all complex of bridge – the architect O. Dīce.

Russian army, retreating from Kuldīga in August 1915 exploded two spans of bridge. They were reconstructed in 1926 with a material of concrete. The ancient cobble stone from 1958 is covered with asphalt but the lantern lights are renewed in 1972.

The old Venta bridge is the monument of architecture and technique of State Heritage. It is the longest road transport bridge in the world built from the bricks. Ventas Rumba and the bridge – they both have become not only the symbols of Kuldīga but all Latvia. Much more than its practical meaning – to join the banks of the river Venta is its symbolic meaning. The bridge is the creator of town’s image and impersonates the proud of Kuldīga inhabitants of their town and people’s achievement. To show a special honour for Kuldīga guests, it is used to wait them at the bridge and take into the town, crossing the bridge on foot

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