Designing the Enterprise-D’s Battle Bridge

Enterprise-D battle bridge concept art
Enterprise-D battle bridge concept art by Andrew Probert dated March 23, 1987

When Andrew Probert designed the Enterprise-D’s saucer separation, he came up with the idea of a battle bridge for the part of the ship that would fight.

“Originally, the producers did not want a battle bridge. That was essentially my concept,” he told Star Trek: The Official Fan Club Magazine in 1988.

The battle bridge would have to cannibalize the Enterprise bridge set from the motion pictures. Probert came up with a 24th-century update, which was seen in “Encounter at Farpoint” and “The Arsenal of Freedom”.

The set became the original Enterprise‘s bridge again for Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, after which it was destroyed in a weather accident. A new battle bridge had to be created for “The Best of Both Worlds”. It used elements from the Enterprise-C bridge that had appeared in “Yesterday’s Enterprise”.

Sources for this story include: “Star Trek The Next Generation: Designing the 24th Century,” Star Trek: The Official Fan Club Magazine 60 (February/March 1988) 2-7

2 comments

  1. That cant be true. The bridge from Trek 4 became the battle bridge. It was supposed to be fully round, “just” a 24th century version of the Trek 4 bridge. But great parts of that set were destroyed in a weather accident, leaving only the aft section usable. That set later became the ship-of-the-week bridge on TNG.

    For Trek 5 a completely new bridge was built. That’s why ut has nothing in common with the earlier movie bridge.

    1. Hi Ossi! The way I understand it is that the Star Trek III bridge set was converted into the Enterprise-D battle bridge for “Encounter at Farpoint”. It was then converted into the main bridge for Star Trek IV, after which it was ruined in a weather accident. So when TNG needed a battle bridge again for “The Best of Both Worlds”, they built a new set. That’s why it looks different in that episode from “Encounter at Farpoint”.

      This was all happening on the same sound stage, as far as I know — Stage 9.

      All the TNG sets on Stage 9 were redressed for Star Trek V and VI. You can probably notice the similarities in those movies.

Leave a Reply