Solution to Last Week's Puzzler
Architecture Puzzler #467
Which, if any, of these statements is true about the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy:
A. It is Europe's oldest closed-spandrel segmental-arch bridge made wholly of stone.
B. It originally housed butcher shops, but now is lined with small art and jewelry shops.
C. Across the top of the bridge, a private corridor was constructed connecting the Palazzo Vecchio and Palazzo Pitti.
The Ponte Vecchio spans the Arno River in Florence, and was constructed around 1345 on the site of several previous bridges dating back to Roman times. While it is a very old wholly stone, closed-spandrel segmental-arch bridge, it is not the oldest in Europe.
The other two statements are true, however. Butchers were banned from the bridge in 1593 in order to enhance the bridge's prestige. The private corridor was constructed in 1593 by Giorgio Vasari and allowed Cosimo I de Medici to travel between the two palazzi without coming into contact with the common people of Florence.