Ponte Del Alpini is one of the oldest and famous bridge in Italy. It is in Bassano del Grappa, a town in which I did my ‘Residency’. First record of bridge is available from 12th century. This bridge was made in wood. It was destroyed many times due to various reasons but again rebuild it back. Famous architect Mr.Andrea Palladio designed the bridge in 1569. Present bridge was constructed as per the same design. It was destroyed during World war II but was rebuild by the forces of Alpini. More about bridge is available on :

Marco and Massimo discussed this idea of making game of ponte del alpini bridge. We have discussed in details. There was a original design of Palladio available and it was taken as reference. I also visited bridge several times to get idea of the bridge. Chaitanya joined me in the study.

We have decided to make ‘Educational Kit’ to make model of Alpini bridge. We also thought of making lesson plan around this game to introduce students with various STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics). The same concept can be extended to other heritage structures in Italy. I am impressed with the kind of heritage structures Italy has and they preserved it very well.

Details of the proposal and concept note is available on : https://drive.google.com/open?id=1doiRYFtbZp-5BxP49uE3hZkGFLuZVeUj

This project would not have been possible with the active support from this two person. They are very fast in designing. Chaitanya with 3D designing (solidworks) and Alberto with 2D designing (Rhino). In turn, I learned from both of them.

chaitanya and Alberto

Initially we have designed broad parameter of the bridge like 1 ft length and then other proportional dimension. In the first design, our focus on to build the stable bridge which has minimum parts. You can get some idea of the background here.

In a less than one weeks time, as a team we made six version of Ponte del Alpini bridge. Initially, we used 3D designing on solidworks. It was easier to visualize the bridge and its joint. Following are main constraint decided by us :

i) Minimum parts for assembly

ii) Assembly has to be from bottom to top and child should not require to lift the bridge or rotate it to fix the parts.

iii) Sufficiently rigid and perfect press fit so that child can lift it in its hand.

iv) The bridge should go nearer to the design of original architect Palladio. We should incorporate as much as detailing as possible.

We made 7 version of the design. After first 2 version, we have fixed dimension and proportion of the bridge. Then one after another, we worked on finer details. We were struggling with parts connecting column and the bridge plateform. We tried several ideas and failed. Alberto came with good innovation of making column support in single arc style. It resolved issue of stability and made the structure simple.

After 2 version, we have done all modifications in Rhino (2D software).

This is example of file cut on laser. We used mdf of 4 mm thickness.

First few versions of the bridge are displayed in a row.

Final bridge looks like this !

Now design files are handed over to CRETA. They will be making 5 kits for trials. Our plan is to test the lesson plan with school children and finalize the lesson plan. Mr.Marco is planning to take this activity in more structured way and plan to make this kits available before X’mas.

Manual for constructing bridge model can be downloaded from :


In Europe, to launch a educational game needs certification from the Govt agency. It cost few hundred Euro to registered the design and to get it certified as a game for children.

The files are shared with CRETA and hence not uploaded over here. You may contact CRETA for more information.

Laser cut job from vendor with red colour

Final product

I hope, we should make similar educational kits for sites in India. We can use them to introduce various engineering concepts. I had thought of designing similar game for ‘Lakadi bridge or Sambhaji bridge’ in Pune. I had started designing but could not find time to complete it.