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Scalini bridge


The Ponte degli Scalini is situated between Villa Gandini and Villa Archinto on the right-hand side and Villa Dugnani on the left-hand side and it was built in 1842 thanks to a donation by the nobleman Giulio Dugnani. The idea for a bridge to connect the localities of Brisa and San Gerolamo had been around since the turn of the 19th century as can be seen from a plan dated 1818. During the early decades of the century, the people of the area had a chance – albeit only occasionally – to experience the convenience and impact of a link across the Grand Canal. There was in fact a tradition of using a floating pontoon on 11th July, the feastday of the patron saint San Giovanni Battista in the exact place where the Ponte degli Scalini bridge now stands. On that occasion, traffic on the Naviglio was prohibited as the provisional bridge was traversed by the procession which passed through all the alleys of the village. When the bridge was actually built it was immediately subjected to traffic that was more than it could reasonably take. The situation was resolved only a few months after its inauguration when carts bearing heavy loads were prohibited from crossing the bridge in order not to destroy the steps. The parapet was built into the framework of the bridge in order to ensure great stability and solidity.