Once again, coming to Hue, the land of the architectural monument complex, tourists can freely admire ideal destinations not only historical monuments, temples, pagodas, but also mountains, rivers. Along with Ngu Binh Mount, Huong River, Truong Tien bridge is properly regarded as one of the iconic symbols of in Hue.
A Hue person living in a foreign country said: “Truong Tien is the destiny bridge of Hue. Landing on Hue but not standing on the bridge means not visiting Hue, just coming across Hue”. The bridge bears the soft and graceful shape as the soul and gentle, quiet characteristics of Hue people; also the harmonious, dreamy of a deep blue flowing Huong River. Truong Tien Bridge stamps an impressive point among each of the local people’s heart and tourists’ admiration as the symbol of Hue ancient imperial city.
Structure Of Truong Tien Bridge:
Similar to Long Bien Bridge across the Red River in Hanoi, Truong Tien was the first bridge to be built through the Huong River, next to the imperial citadel. Among the first bridges with steel structure in Dong Duong from the late 19th century to the early 20th century, Truong Tien Bridge was constructed in approximately 402.6m long and included six steel arches in comb-rimmed shape with the aperture of each arch of 67m. Along with the bridge size of 6m, Truong Tien Bridge was styled in Gothic architecture and built by western materials. Until 1899, the bridge was completed. The north of the bridge is located in Phu Hoa ward, while the south is located in Phu Hoi ward.
Truong Tien Bridge In History Of Hue:
Through more a hundred-year history, Truong Tien (Trang Tien) Bridge appears as a historical witness of ups and downs in Hue. When it was just completed, Trang Tien was the steel bridge with firm structure and modern construction techniques of the Western, which made French colonist proud of their design. Unfortunately, the steel bridge was severely damaged in the 1904’s flood. In the restoration of 1906, the face of the bridge was formed in the concrete-steel blend. In 1937 under the emperor Bao Dai, the bridge was extensively restored and repaired. The staircase was lengthened in two sides to make it more convenient for walkers and cyclists. In 1946, a mine explosion in Vietnam-France war caused the bridge to collapse in two left sides. Two years later, Trang Tien Bridge was restored to serve travelling, until 1953 it was repaired closely as the old structure.
In the Spring 1968 general offensive event, Truong Tien bridge continuously fell in the Huong River flow. At that time, a floating bridge was built next to Truong Tien bridge to interconnect its two sides; and Truong Tien Bridge was temporarily repaired. After the war, Vietnam became united in 1976, yet the bridge was restored once more time in 1991. During five years’ restoration (1991-1995) by Thang Long Bridge 1 Company, there were vitally important changes featuring tearing down balconies in the railings at the bridge piles; the bridge way (both main and extra paths) was narrowed due to connection of two tubes (The main path is now down to 5.4m wide). The original aluminium silver paint was changed into the grey colour.
Hue festival 2002, Truong Tien Bridge was installed with a modern colour lighting system in programming control. The bridge is sparkling in colourful lights of the system at dawn.
Beauty Of Truong Tien Bridge:
Of the metropolises, Hue is almost well kept in the integrity of its distinctive and ancient houses, temples, bridges. Perhaps, Truong Tien Bridge also bears the unique beauty of a romantic city. It went through a hundred years of painful periods of Vietnam history. The bridge as a charming woman reflects itself in the Huong River day by day. It seems that destructive wars killed that beautiful woman; however, the vitality of the bridge becomes more and more enduring. The vitality also evokes a sense of small-town placidity – a romantic Hue.
Every morning, tourists can easily see crowds of students in áo dài and white shirts across the bridge to go to school and pay a visit to admire the architectural monuments nearby. The picture of Truong Tien Bridge is brightened up by sparkling and vivid lights in the evening, which is always in local people and tourists’ memory. It is hard not to feel a charming landscape of Truong Tien Bridge crossing through the Huong River. The harmony is that an ancient Truong Tien Bridge associates with the curving Huong River hugging central Hue, clusters of red-roofed houses scattered across a bed of green.
Despite the appearance of many bridges across the Huong River, Truong Tien bridge still play an essential role in transportation. Furthermore, that bridge – the icon of Hue ancient imperial capital is always the strong connection of history from the past, the present to the future.
By Minh Phuong