Work in progress” at the Ponte Vecchio in Florence

The preparatory works for the restoration of Ponte Vecchio have begun, one of the symbols of Florence and the world; it is an unprecedented construction site because never in its centenary history has the bridge been the subject of a conservative restoration.

The investigations are carried out by a specially set up floating platform on the Arno river: as part of the complex diagnostic and monitoring activities, CNR-IBE is dealing with the analysis of the wooden elements.

The methodology adopted is that described in the UNI 11119 (Cultural heritage – Wooden artefacts – Load-bearing structures – On site inspection for the diagnosis of the timber members) and UNI EN 17121 (Conservation of cultural heritage – Historical timber structures – Guidelines for the on-site assessment of load-bearing timber structures) and is aimed at analyzing the load-bearing capacity of the structural elements. The dendrochronological study of some elements is also planned, which could lead to the dating of the oldest wooden components of the bridge.