Pont de Pierre & Pont Chaban-Delmas: bridges not walls

Pont de Pierre & Pont Chaban-Delmas: bridges not walls

These two remarkable bridges, among the seven the city has, span the Garonne, a river the Bordelais once thought of as indomitable…

The Pont de Pierre, also called the Pont Napoléon, was the first road bridge to allow the Bordelais to cross the Garonne, there by connecting the city centre with the Bastide districts on the right bank. Started in December 1812, the Stone Bridge was inaugurated 10 years later, on 1 May 1822. Made up of 17 arches, legend makes a link with the number of letters that make up Napoléon Bonaparte's name 17. The bridge also has the distinction of being hollow, allowing visitors to explore it from the interior.

Though the city for a long time had to be satisfied with just the Pont de Pierre for traffic and the single track of the Eiffel gateway for the movement of trains, in recent decades things have accelerated. Today, the Pont Garonne bridge has four lanes and, when the Pont Chaban-Delmas was put into service on 18 March 2013 after three years of work, five bridges are now open to traffic. The latter crosses the Garonne between the Pierre and Aquitaine Bridge, connecting the Quay de Bacalan with the Quay Brazza in the north of La Bastide, hence its original name, ‘Pont Bacalan-Bastide'.

The municipal council of the city decided to name it after the former mayor of Bordeaux. To allow large ships to navigate on the Garonne, the Pont ‘Jacques Chaban-Delmas' has become the largest vertical lift bridge in Europe.

Pont de Pierre and Pont Chaban-Delmas
33000 Bordeaux