The Kennedy Bridge is an electrically-powered round swing bridge with a beam of 28.4 metres. It was built by the Gutehoffnungshütte of Sterkrade and the firm August Klönne of Dortmund from 1960 to 1961. Beneath the bridge, a flood barrier is fitted. This was first used during the flooding of February 1962.
Later, the bridge was named after the US President John F. Kennedy (1917-1963, in office from 1961 to 1963), who is still very popular in Germany. When shipyards situated upriver were still working, the bridge was opened one or two times a month on average to let new ships pass. After all the changes in German shipbuilding industry, from which Bremerhaven was not spared, the bridge is now opened only very infrequently.