The Ponte Garibaldi is the bridge most visitors to Rome will cross at some point during their stay in the Eternal City, since it connects the Lungotevere De ‘Cenci in the rione Regola to the Piazza Giuseppe Gioachino Belli in the Trastevere district, which is where the city’s night life is.
Ponte Garibaldi Rome
History and description
The Ponte Garibaldi consists of two arches, measures 120m in length and has a width of 23m.
It was built between 1884 and 1888, by architect Angelo Vescovali, and with the aim of easing the flow of traffic into Trastevere, since the existing Ponte Cestio, Ponte Rotto (obviously) and Ponte Sisto proved inadequate. The need of a new bridge had become even more apparent after the railway station Stazione Trastevere had been built.
Until the Ponte Garibaldi was built the only ways to cross the Tiber, except by ferry, were the two wooden bridges of the Isola Tiberina and the Ponte Sisto bridge.
At the time Rome had just become the capital of the then newly created country Italy. In order to live up to its new status, a whole new network of streets was created in the historical centre. The Ponte Garibaldi was an extension of one of the main streets of this network, the Via Arenula. Once across the bridge, another wide, new street, called Viale del Re (“King’s Avenue”) continued through the Trastevere district. After World War II, this street was renamed Viale Trastevere.
The Ponte Garibaldi got its name because of its proximity to the Janiculum Hill, where Garibaldi had fought the French troops in 1849. Its inauguration took place in 1888.