Liberty Bridge (Szabadság híd)

The Liberty Bridge (Szabadság-híd in Hungarian) was the third road bridge built in Budapest, in the year of the Millennium. It was originally named Ferenc József híd (Franz Joseph Bridge) after Franz Joseph I, Emperor of Austria and King of Hungary, who inaugurated the bridge on 4 October 1896.

The 333.6 m long, 20.1 m wide bridge is a cantilever bridge (however the shape resembles to chain bridges) the cantilever arms are fixed with 609 tons counterweights. The bridge was designed by János Feketeházy, details of the plan were worked out by István Gállik and József Beke, while the portals were designed by Virgil Nagy.

Construction of the bridge started in 1894. In WWII the German Army exploded the bridge on 16 January 1945. After the war the Liberty Bridge was the first bridge which was rebuilt, because many parts of the blown up bridge could be used and utilised. Re-construction works started during the spring of 1946 and the bridge was opened for traffic on 20 August 1946. Between 2007-2009 the bridge was completely refurbished.


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Copyright ©: Text and photos by Károly Teleki Industrial Heritage Hungary

Source: 1) Budapest műszaki útmutatója 1896 (reprint). Edvi Illés Aladár (szerkesztő). TERC Kft., 2005. 2) Technikai fejlődésünk története 1867-1927. Magyar Mérnök- és Építész-Egylet, Stádium Rt., 1928. 3) A Visegrádi Négyek országainak technikai műemlékei II. Magyar Mérnöki Kamara, Budapest, 2004 (ISBN 963-214-544-5). 4) Duna-hídjaink., dr. Tóth Ernő (szerkesztő), Közlekedésfejlesztési Koordinációs Központ, 2009. 5) History, construction and refurbishment of Danube bridges in Budapest, Hungary. László Hegedűs, Miklós Iványi (authors), Technical University of Budapest, Department of Steel Structures, hsz.bme.hu.