This article contains information about a typical Venetian bridge.
A Venetian bridge (ponte in Italian) is generally composed of an arch, a bridge wall, and steps. Within Venice, a bridge chiefly serves two primary purposes: pedestrian and cargo transportation as well as a carrier and passageway for utilities such as water and electricity. 
Venetian bridges fall into 3 different categories based on the materials that are used in its construction:
- Masonry bridge - the most common type, found all over the city. The most famous example is the Rialto.
- Wood bridge - somewhat uncommon, they can still be found dotted throughout parts of Venice. The most famous example is the Ponte del'Accademia.
- Metal bridge - quite rare due to aesthetic incongruity, these bridges have been quite controversial when built by the city.
Processes affecting bridges
The high tides and frequent flooding in Venice damage the foundations of the bridge. Moto Ondoso, the Italian phrase for wakes of passing boats, deteriorates the masonry and sometimes breaks off segments of the arch and or plaster. In addition to the gradual process of Moto Ondoso erosion, the constant foot traffic and cargo transportation over time causes wear and tear on the steps and railings. More rarely (but also more violently) the undersides of bridges experience deterioration when boats crash into the foundations or lower parts of the Arches. Over time, bridges suffer a certain degree of decay and bridge maintenance becomes necessary to keep them fully functional. .
- ↑ Gianpietro Zucchetta, Venezia, ponte per ponte (Verlag Stamperia di Venezia, 1992)
- ↑ The Building Blocks of Venice: Preserving knowledge of a city's infrastructure and maintenance. Worcester Ma. Worcester Polytechnic Institute.2011 
- Wikipedia article about bridge structure: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bridge