The Pont-Canal throughout history
1894-1896 : Construction
During the construction of the lateral canal to the Loire, unlike in Chatillon-sur-Loire, Digoin or Guétin, building a canal bridge in brickwork to cross the river was impossible. The arches had to be very high in order to let flood water flow, which made it difficult to build. Moreover, it would have been a real barrier for the Loire rising water. In Chatillon, the Loire river bed had to be crossed through a 1020 m by 55 m area of the channel.
Before going any further, let’s take a detour on this crossing of the Loire prior to the advent of the canal bridge.
1940-45 : Destruction and reconstruction
In June 1940, the German advance was inevitable and the French Army was collapsing. The only possible way was to delay the enemy’s advance by destroying the communication channels. Thus, French Civil Engineering tackled blowing up all the Loire bridges. Briare’s canal bridge was destroyed on June 17th, 1940.