The  New Bridge (also known as Mitrovica Bridge) is a steel truss bridge crossing the Ibar river in Mitrovica, in northern Kosovo. The New Bridge has become an iconic symbol of Kosovo division, as it separates around 80,000 Kosovo Albanians in the south from about 20,000 Serbs living in the north.

ura_e_ibrit2-537x350

In 2001 the bridge was refurbished with French government money. Structural operations such as the widening of the central pier, the reconstruction of the slab and pavements made of concrete and the replacement of the bearings and expansion joints were performed on the one hundred meter long bridge construction. Apart from these bridge repair actions the works also included the placement of additional architectural elements such as viewpoints on the bridge, the supply and placement of lighting, bank access steps and the construction of two decorative arches. The Freyssinet company was awarded the contract to reconstruct the Mitrovica Bridge. The contract’s terms stipulated that Freyssinet hire a multi-ethnic construction team to rebuild the bridge. In September 2000 the 61 workers from Kosovo were chosen – one Albanian for one Serb. The project manager was Pierre Lottici. The Department of Transport and Infrastructure – a division of the UNMIK Joint Interim Administrative Structure (JIAS) – oversaw the bridge contract. At the end of June 2001, the new DM 3 million Mitrovica Bridge was handed over to the City of Mitrovica.

20_full

The New Bridge is one of three bridges over the Ibar River in Mitrovica. The other two, one leading to the railway station, and the other being an abandoned railway bridge, are only lightly used. The New Bridge is the main crossing point between the two sides of the city.