ZAR Road Bridge over the Komati River (Grobler's Bridge)
Click to view large map
|See more photographs|
Proclaimed a National Monument in 1955, devolved to a Provincial Heritage Resource in the Mpumalanga Province in 1999.
The road from Machadodorp to Carolina crosses the Komati River by means of Grobler's Bridge about 29 kilometres from Machadodorp. The bridge is called after Johannes Lodewikus Grobler who represented the Carolina district as a member of the Second Volksraad from 1895 to 1899. It was built in accordance with a resolution passed by the Executive Committee of the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek on 22nd January, 1896. The contractor was Johannes VAN WAART and the precise cost of the bridge was R23 491,68. The bridge was constructed after WIERDA, in his annual report for 1895, had argued strongly for building stone bridges, especially where exposures of rock offered firm foundations for the piers, since they would eliminate the need to import 'pre-fabricated steel bridges' from overseas. The authorities accepted this recommendation and immediately began to design and build stone bridges, and by 1898 five such bridges were already in use, the Grobler Bridge being one of these. The bridge consists of four 9 metre stone arches and has a total length of 41 metres. It was opened to traffic by J. L. Grobler in May, 1897.
While the bridge was being built, it was found that a bend in the river above it retarded the flow of water and constituted a danger to the bridge during floods, so the course of the river was diverted over a distance of 210 metres in order that the water should flow faster under the bridge. This work was done by a certain HA VAN DER MERWE.
The bridge fell into disuse when replaced by the nearby Stoltz Bridge in 1967.
Wording on National Monument Plaque
Provincial Heritage Site;5600;23/12/1955
Writings about this entry