You might be wondering why there is no post about Checkpoint Charlie and Tiergarten. The reason- I had a one day time limit and I didn’t have enough time to see these. I was actually on my way to the Charlie Checkpoint, but…… I got lost. I’m embarrassed now. Oh well… I was going the right way, but then I missed the street which I had to turn at and.. that’s when I decided to just go to the Berlin Wall (East Side Gallery).
This post isn’t about how I got lost on my way to Charlie Checkpoint. It’s about an extraordinary bridge, that has an interesting history. It’s the OBERBAUMBRUCKE (Oberbaum Bridge).
It was built in the 1700s and at first was only a small wooden structure. The tiny bridge was modified in 1879 mainly to accommodate heavier traffic. It became the longest bridge in Berlin (154 meters). But because of the growing population, the bridge was still not big enough. Plans were made for a new bridge, which would accommodate pedestrians, road vehicles and the U-Bahn. The is how today’s double-decker oberbaumbrucke was born.
The U-Bahn crossed the bridge for the first time in 1902. Sadly, during WW2, the middle section of the bridge was blown up to stop the Red Army from crossing. It was restored and reopened in 1994.
Today, auto traffic speeds across the lower section of the bridge while the U-Bahn line (U1) zooms over the upper level.
Isn’t that some interesting history? It is also important to note, that after the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, the bridge came to represent the reunification of Germany.