Photo credit: Nea Culpa, source Ljubljana Tourism

Triple Bridge is considered as one of Plečnik’s most important works, where his creativity and sensible approach to problem-solving are clearly apparent.

At the site of today’s Triple Bridge, an original wooden bridge was already in place in the Middle Ages. Back in those times, sales cottages also stood on the site, which over time gradually began to risk the stability of the bridge. In 1842 the wooden bridge was eventually replaced by a stone bridge that was built to the plans of a young Italian architect, Giovanni Picc (1792-1879). It was named after Archduke Franz Karl, the father of Emperor Franz Joseph, who was also there to open it, which is still witnessed by the inscription on the old bridge.

The old bridge was too narrow for the growing levels of traffic, however, and soon after returning to Ljubljana Plečnik began to think about solving this problem. He took his idea from a bridge in Prague, where they set up two parallel footbridges during the construction of the Manes Bridge. It, therefore, came to pass that the Ljubljana bridge was expanded with two side footbridges.

Triple Bridge
Photo credit: Ljubljana Tourism

Plečnik pursued several goals in the construction of the Triple Bridge, which included having a  relation to the old one, since this would preserve the old stone bridge, establishing the Mediterranean character of the city, the connection of the river with the city, the transfer of Prešeren Square over the Ljubljanica into the narrow Stritarjeva street, and the reuse of any excess material.

The result was that on the one hand, the entire composition of the three bridges covers the width of the Prešeren Square, yet on the other, it narrows to the width of the street. In creating this, Plečnik transferred the Prešeren Square over the water and directed it to Stritarjeva street, and further on to the Robba fountain, which stands in front of the town hall, and with the silhouette of the castle dominating over the entire composition.