Memorial Bridge (Bangkok)

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Memorial Bridge

Phra Phuttha Yodfa Bridge Pano.jpg
Memorial Bridge with the Express Boat Pier
Coordinates13°44′21″N 100°29′51″E / 13.73917°N 100.49750°E / 13.73917; 100.49750
Carries3 lanes of roadway, pedestrians
CrossesChao Phraya River
LocaleBangkok, Thailand
Other name(s)Phra Phuttayotfa Bridge
Total length678 m
Longest span78 m
Clearance below7.3 m
Opened6 April 1932

The Memorial Bridge (Thai: สะพานปฐมบรมราชานุสรณ์) is a bascule bridge over the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, Thailand, connecting the districts of Phra Nakhon and Thonburi.[1][2]


The bridge opened on 6 April 1932,[3] by King Prajadhipok (Rama VII) in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Chakri Dynasty and the foundation of Bangkok, shortly before the Siamese coup d'état of 24 June 1932. In English the bridge is commonly known as Memorial Bridge, however in Thai, it is most commonly known as Phra Phuttayotfa Bridge (สะพานพระพุทธยอดฟ้า), after King Phutthayotfa Chulalok (Rama I), the first king of the Chakri Dynasty. The name is more commonly shortened as Saphan Phut (สะพานพุทธ) or Phut Bridge or Buddha Bridge (meaning: Bridge of Buddha).[4]

Construction of the bridge was started on 3 December 1929[3] by Dorman Long, Middlesbrough, England, under the supervision of Italian technicians from SNOS (Società Nazionale Officine Savignano).[5] The bridge used to have a double-leaf bascule-type lifting mechanism, which is now unused.[6]

On 5 June 1944, as part of the bombing of Bangkok in World War II, a force of B-29 Superfortresses, in a test of their capabilities before being deployed against the Japanese home islands, targeted the bridge. Their bombs fell over two kilometers away, damaging no civilian structures, but downed some tram lines and destroyed a Japanese military hospital and the Japanese secret police headquarters. It was not until 1947 that Thai authorities learned of the intended target. Eventually, it was taken out by the Allies and rebuilt in 1949. [7][8][9]



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  3. ^ a b "Memorial Bridge". Bureau of Maintenance and Traffic Safety, Thailand. Archived from the original on 28 May 2008. Retrieved 10 December 2014.
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  5. ^ Fasoli, Vilma; Filippi, Francesca B. (2014-12-01). "The penetration of Italian professionals in the context of the Siamese modernization". ABE Journal. Architecture beyond Europe (5). doi:10.4000/abe.841. ISSN 2275-6639.
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  7. ^ Duncan Stearn (30 May – 5 June 2003). "A Slice of Thai History: The air war over Thailand, 1941-1945; Part Two, The Allies attack Thailand, 1942-1945". Pattaya Mail. Pattaya Mail Publishing Co. XI (21). Retrieved 17 February 2012.
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