Svatopluk Čech Bridge

Svatopluk Čech Bridge or Čech Bridge (Most Svatopluka Čecha or Čechův most in Czech) is a arch bridge over river Vltava (Moldau) in Prague, Czech Republic.

Construction of the bridge started in 1905 and finished in 1908. Its length is 169 meters (one of the shortest in Prague) and width is 16 meters.

The bridge connects the Prague districts Holešovice and the Old Town (Staré Město). Construction materials are stone (pillars) and iron (arches). Up to 1961 the roadway was made of wood - a hard specie named Jarrah from Australia. The roadway got very slippery during rains.

Bridge architects were Jan Koula and Jiří Soukup. Art Nouveau style sculptures (including four put on 17.5 meters high pylons) were created by sculptors Klusáček, Wurzel, Popp and Amort.

The bridge was named after recently died Czech writer Svatopluk Čech (1846-1908); its opening became feat of Czech nation. During occupation of Czech lands by Nazis name of the bridge was changed (1940-45) to Mendel Bridge (Mendelův most), after Gregor Mendel (of German ethnicity).

During 1971-75 Svatopluk Čech Bridge went through major reconstruction, during 1953-56 and 2000-01 through smaller reconstructions, during 1984-87 the sculptures were repaired.

As the only Art Nouveau style bridge in the Czech Republic it is protected by state (chráněná technická památka). It is used by tramways, cars and pedestrians.