Southern Djurgården is surrounded by some of Stockholm’s most beautiful bodies of water, such as Djurgårdsbrunnsviken in the north and Saltsjön in the south. But there had been a need for some way of connecting them. This could have either been through transport, such as the Djurgården ferries and commuter boats, or by bridges. Djurgården Bridge was the island’s first and built around 1661. Folke Bernadotte’s Bridge is number five.
Keeping Djurgården connected then…
When Karl XIV Johan took a liking to Djurgården in the early 19th century, two particular areas caught his eye. These were the scenic area known as Rosendal and the Ladugårdsgärde training field. As early as 1818, the King had the Kungliga Borgen pavilion built, in order to be able to follow the troops’ movements in the field from a strategic height. Shortly afterwards, he built a pleasure ground in the Rosendal area. And to make it easier and quicker to get between the two places, he installed a temporary pontoon bridge over Djurgårdsbrunnsviken. It disappeared after the King’s death in 1844, but returned for the Stockholm World Fair in summer 1930. It gave off a beautiful shine in the evenings.
Today, with the number of visitors to Djurgården having increased to around 15 million a year, accessibility is a key issue. We focus on encouraging people to walk, cycle or take public transport here; this is part of our vision for a car- and fossil-free Djurgården. And so, we wanted to make it easier for people to get between northern and southern Djurgården. We also wanted to encourage more ranges of movement around the park. And so the idea for re-building Karl Johan’s bridge was born.
A royal inaugaration
In 2019, the Swedish King and Queen opened Folke Bernadotte’s Bridge. It’s a stone’s throw from Dragongården, where Folke Bernadotte – a humanitarian activist – lived. The bridge’s single steel beam spans the hundred-metre-wide bay. The architect is Henrik Rundquist, who has designed several bridges for Djurgården over the years.
Stockholm Building of the Year 2020
The footbridge joins the Museum Park with Rosendal and the rest of southern Djurgården. The bridge is not only popula with visitors, but also for those living in Norra Djurgårdsstaden. And its global popularity was proven once more when Stockholmers voted it as the Stockholm Building of the Year 2020.
A footbridge gives visitors more options for getting around Djurgården and also contributes towards health and well-being (3.4)
Folke Bernadotte’s bridge makes it easier for visitors to get between the Museum Park and southern Djurgården and reduces the need for motor traffic (11.6)