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Amsterdam | by Bart van Dijk (...)
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The Magere Brug ("Skinny Bridge") is a bridge over the river Amstel in the city centre of Amsterdam. It connects the banks of the river at Kerkstraat street, between the Keizersgracht and Prinsengracht canals.


The Magere Brug is a bascule bridge made of white-painted wood. The present bridge was built in 1934. The first bridge at this site was built in 1691 as Kerkstraatbrug and had 13 arches. Because this bridge was very small, the locals called it Magere brug, which means small or skinny bridge. In 1871 the state of the bridge was so bad that it was demolished and replaced by a nine-arched wooden bridge. Fifty years later this bridge also needed to be replaced. Architect Piet Kramer made several designs for a steel and stone bridge, but the city decided to replace it with a new bridge that looked the same as the previous, only slightly bigger. In 1934 the bridge was demolished and replaced. The last major renovation was in 1969. Until 1994 the bridge was opened by hand, but now is opened automatically.


Use of the bridge has been limited to pedestrians and cyclists since 2003. It is however opened many times a day in order to let through river traffic. The boats used for sightseeing tours are low enough to pass underneath the bridge when closed. The bridge is decorated with 1200 light bulbs that are illuminated in the evening.


Every year on V-E Day (Dutch: bevrijdingsdag) there is a concert next to the bridge, which Queen Beatrix usually attends.


The bridge can be seen in a number of films, such as the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever from 1971.


Source: Wikipedia

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Taken on December 16, 2008