The Pont des Arts in Paris

Haaa the Pont des Arts and its famous love locks: a whole story. But did you know the current Pont des Arts is not the one built in the 19th century?

The whole world knows the Pont des Arts for its countless “love locks” that lovers come (despite the prohibition from Paris authorities) to lock on the railings. The story of this legendary Parisian bridge spans two centuries.

In the beginning, the Pont des Arts (named after the Louvre Palace called the Palais des Arts during the Second Empire!) was a pedestrian bridge built between 1801 and 1804. It was the first metal bridge in the capital. Thought up by engineers Louis-Alexandre de Cessart and Jacques Vincent de Lacroix Dillon, this nine-iron-arche bridge looked like a hanging garden with its many bushes and flowers.

After the bombings of the First and Second World War, the Pont des Arts is weakened and ends up by collapsing in 1979 while a barge collides with a pillar. Luckily, the bridge was closed to traffic for already two years! The Pont des Arts is definitively dismantled in 1980, before being rebuilt between 1981 and 1984 according to the original blueprints (excluding the number of arches that has been reduced to seven).

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For the record, it’s on this bridge writer Vercors gave leader of the movement “Ceux de la Résistance” copies of Editions de Minuit the latter was entrusted with giving them to General de Gaulle. Legendary, the Pont des Arts has been the inspirational subjects of many painters, writers and singers.

Its aura still influences the whole planet, so, don’t deny yourself this pleasure and have a walk there. In the summer, painters, bohemian musicians, families and groups of friends gladly meet there for a picnic.

Manon C.
Last updated on 14 August 2018

Practical information

Location

Port du Louvre
75 Paris

Prices
Free

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