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Chain (Mykolaivskyi) Bridge

  • Mykolayivskyi Chain Bridge across the Dnieper was built and designed by an engineer C. Viniol and opened on September 27, 1853.

    However the history of the bridge crossing at this location dates back to early antiquity: even in 1680 there stood a floating bridge called Spaskyi. As the city was developing, there appeared a need to erecting a permanent bridge across the Dnipro. It was founded in 1848, after project approval by Emperor Nicholas I (Mykola I) after whom the bridge got its name. The bridge had a length of 365 fathoms (776 m) and total weight of over 100 thousand poods (1 pood equals about 16 kg).

    Canvas of the bridge was based on five stone "bulls" with granite slabs at their base. Their upper parts took the form of arches with towers made in the style of medieval English Gothic on the sides. "Bulls" were connected with iron chains (12 pounds (192 kg) each).

    It was a drawbridge for the passage of ships with masts, and in 1900 the canvas of the bridge was raised, the river channel was made deeper, so there was no need for a drawbridge anymore. In 1912 petrol-tram started crossing the Chain Bridge.

    In 1920, Polish troops blew up one of the bridge spans. Broken chains caused the destruction of the entire structure.

    Capital reconstruction began in 1924, designed by Paton. Stone arches were replaced by higher ones, made of iron, spans were raised and the system of chains was maintained. The renovated bridge was opened in May 1925. It was named after Yevheniia Bosh.

    On September 18, 1941 the Red Army, which retreated from the capital of Ukraine blew up the bridge.

    Today Metro bridge is almost at the same place (a little to the north).

    It is possible that the Brooklyn Bridge (New York, USA) was designed on the model of Nicholas bridge, because model of bridge from Kyiv was exhibited in 1854 and American engineer Reblinham could see it before he implemented his American project in 1883.

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