Bridges of Amsterdam | Bruggen van Amsterdam

Discovering Amsterdam's Bridges: A Guide to the City's Iconic Landmarks

De Isa van Eeghenbrug – Bridge 30 | History and information

Bridge 30 Information

During the restoration in the summer of 2020 it was discovered the beams were positioned 2.6 centimeters too low. As a result tour boats were damaged as the bridge was already one of the lowest bridges in Amsterdam before the restoration.
The bridge only received its official name in 2016, named after Isabella Henriette van Eeghen an archivist and historian at the Amsterdam City Archives. During her lifetime it was located on the Amsteldijk but from 2007 it has been located in the De Bazel Building on the Vijzelstraat, next to this bridge.

Located in the Vijzelstraat and gracefully spanning the Herengracht, Bridge Number 30 holds a fascinating history that dates back to around 1727 when the first bridge was constructed. Over the years, as traffic requirements evolved, the bridge underwent several modifications. In 1882, it was lowered and widened to meet the growing needs of the city.

Fast forward to the early 20th century, architect Jo van der Mey, from the Public Works Service, took on the challenge of redesigning three bridges in the Vijzelstraat, including Bridge Numbers 30, 41, and 70. The vision was to create a cohesive unit with these three bridges forming a series along the Vijzelstraat.

However, the execution of the plan occurred in intervals, partly due to the phased widening of the Vijzelstraat. In 1919, Piet Kramer, another prominent architect, took over the project, retaining Van der Mey’s bridge structure while adding his own artistic touch. The result was a bridge that combined elements of both architects’ styles.

In 1922, the bridge was completed, and to commemorate the occasion, annual stones in granite were placed on both sides of the bridge pillars, showcasing the year of completion. The abutments and pillars were crafted using brick and brickwork, showcasing a blend of durability and aesthetics.

Kramer’s distinctive design extended to the four natural stone columns enveloping the abutments, elegantly merging into the bridge deck. These columns feature intricate oriental motifs, likely envisioned by Kramer. Additionally, he introduced a new balustrade adorned with decorative ironwork, deviating from Van der Mey’s original lantern designs.

The foundation supporting the entire structure is built on a wooden pile foundation, ensuring stability and longevity.

Picture of Miss Van Eeghen. The significance of Miss Van Eeghen for the historiography of Amsterdam is difficult to overestimate. For her work she received the Buchelius Prize (1958), the Menno Herzberger Prize (1965), the Silver Medal of the City of Amsterdam (1971) and the Silver Museum Medal of the City of Amsterdam (1988).

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