Remedial Works and Repairs of Historical Bridge in Prague

Iva Broukalová, Vladimír Křístek


The recent reconstruction of the historical masonry Charles Bridge in Prague was designed with respect to original conception, materials and ancient construction techniques. The repair and remedial works were based on analysis of the multi-decade response of the bridge, diagnosis, and assessment of damages, failures and deterioration processes related to materials, environment, climate, structural arrangement and detailing regarding heritage, historical and structural aspects. The gentle way of remedial works with minimal intervention in the loadbearing structure is a result of a wide-range discussion on appropriate strategies for refurbishment, restoration, conservation and preservation corresponding to location and significance of the historic bridge. The reconstruction increased durability and provides a long service life of the historical bridge and protection against harmful effects for many years to come. The article outlines historical data, consequences of the controversial reconstruction in the second half of the last century. Effects of river flow, temperature, and moisture and their influence on needful repairs are considered. Stages of reconstruction are presented; in the first stage, strengthening of foundations of bridge piers is described including historical background and impact of river flow on subgrade of piers. Ways of repairs and reconstruction of the bridge deck, its draining, and other related bridge elements are shown as a part of the second stage of reconstruction.


bridge deck; draining; foundations; masonry bridge; reconstruction; stone masonry; temperature effects.

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DOI: 10.3846/bjrbe.2017.33


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