Đurđevića Tara Bridge

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Đurđevića Tara Bridge
Montenegro Tara bridge.JPG
Carries cars, pedestrians
Crosses the Tara River
Locale close to Žabljak, Montenegro
Design arch bridge
Total length 365 m
Longest span 116 m
Clearance below 170 m
Opened 1940

Đurđevića Tara Bridge (pronounced [dʑǔːrdʑɛv̞iːtɕaː târa]) is a concrete arch bridge over the Tara River in northern Montenegro. It is located at the crossroads between Mojkovac, Žabljak and Pljevlja, between the villages of Budečevica and Trešnjica.

Tara bridge

Construction[edit]

Đurđevića Tara Bridge, which was designed by Mijat Trojanović, was built between 1937 and 1940 in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. The project's Chief Engineer was Isaac Russo.

The 365 metres (1,198 ft) long bridge has five arches; the largest span is 116 metres (381 ft). The roadway stands 172 metres (564 ft) above the Tara River. At the time of its completion, it was the biggest vehicular concrete arch bridge in Europe.

World War II[edit]

Much of Montenegro, including the Tara Canyon, came under Italian occupation following the German-led invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941. As the mountainous terrain made it suitable for guerrilla warfare, a partisan uprising occurred in the area. Italian forces took control of the Tara Bridge during an Italian offensive in 1942.

A Yugoslav Partisan raiding party blew up the central arch with the aid of one of the bridge engineers, Lazar Jauković. The attack cut the only feasible crossing over the Tara Canyon halting the Italian advance. When Jauković was eventually captured, however, the Italians executed the engineer.

These events were depicted in the 1969 Yugoslav film "Most".

Present day[edit]

The bridge was rebuilt in 1946. It was used in the 1978 British action film Force 10 from Navarone set during WWII. Bungee jumping is organised on the longest arch directly above Tara river.

The bridge also plays a large part in the Dutch novel 'het land achter gods rug' by A. den Doolaard, which was published in 1956. This novel is partly based on the true story of the bridge including its destruction by partisans during the WWII.

Coordinates: 43°9′1.51″N 19°17′42.86″E / 43.1504194°N 19.2952389°E / 43.1504194; 19.2952389