In the second half of the sixteenth century Antonio da Ponte ordered the construction of new prisons, which were built in 1600 by Antonio Contin. Up to this time, Palazzo Ducale had hosted, in addition to the apartment of the Doge, the seat of the government and the courts, even prisons. These were located on the ground floor, right and left of the Gate of Wheat.
The construction of these new prisons, connected to the Palace with the subsequent completion of the Bridge of Sighs, had the intention to improve the living conditions of prisoners with larger cells, more light and air. The outcome of this attempt, however, was not very succesful.
The bridge was built in 1614 by the architect Antonio Contin in baroque style, you can recognize the emblem on the facade commissioned by the Doge. Closed and covered, it consists of two corridors separated by a wall. One connects the Prisons to the Halls of Judge of the Laws and the other connects the prisons to the Sale of the Avogaria and to the parlor. Apart from the gondolas, you can seen it and photograph it from the Ponte della Canonica and Ponte della Paglia, the pier of Palazzo Ducale.