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Love Affair With Cool Bridges

Bear Up North

Cyburbian Emeritus
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I had the pleasure this week of attending a meeting that included a presentation from an Ohio transportation official. The topic was "Safety On The New Toledo River Crossing".

This bridge, currently under construction and due to be open in a couple years, is the largest transportation project in Ohio history. It will be a very impressive structure, cable-stayed design with very-long approaches. It is being built right next to the present I-280 bridge.....I believe the only remaining drawbridge on the Interstate Highway System. As the speaker said, "The Craig Memorial (draw) Bridge goes up about six-hundred times a year and goes back down about five-hundred and ninety-five times."

If you have ever travelled through Toledo, heading to or from Detroit, and your starting or finishing place is east of Toledo.....you probably travelled I-280. Traffic nightmare xway built in the ealy 1960's, drawbridge and all.

The bridge will have glass panels with LED's built-in....able to change colors to match a season or a holiday or an event. There are all kind of world records being set with this structure, such as most stainless cable, most this and that, etc.

Toledo has other river crossings. Martin Luther King Bridge is another drawbridge, connecting Cherry Street (downtown) to east Toledo's Main Street. Both I-75 and I-475 have river crossings. Also near downtown is the Anthony Wayne Bridge, a suspension bridge (guessing it is about 30th longest in USA).

So.....I like cool bridges and I like Toledo's Anthony Wayne Bridge and for sure will like the new river crossing. For twenty-five (25) plus years I walked (on Labor Day) the Mackinac Bridge (my personal favorite). Other favorites include an interesting older bridge that crosses the Delaware Water Gap, some neat bridges in W VA, and some great bridges over gorges, etc. in the western mountains.

So, with my favorite being Big Mac (Michigan).....what's your's?

Bear
 

mike gurnee

Cyburbian
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3,066
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The Bridge of Lions in St. Augustine. Recently saved from destruction. After that, I am amazed at the inventiveness in Appalachia: flatbed railroad cars are in high demand as driveway bridges.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
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10,080
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Great topic! I love the old steel truss bridges so much more than modern concrete.
 

Bear Up North

Cyburbian Emeritus
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If you read the first post on this thread you will see a reference to the new bridge crossing in Toledo and the word "safety". Unfortunately, Toledo is in the national news spotlight because of a tragic accident at the bridge site.

About 2:30 PM, Monday, 2-16-04, a huge crane, specifically built for this project, collapsed. Three (3) workers died and five (5) others are in a local hospital, with one (1) of those workers in critical condition.

The news is sad, but with so much construction going on in our world, not unusual. Mankind builds "stuff". We build it big, strong, small, weak, etc. We need more infrastructure to move more of us. We build tall buildings, to utilize land wisely and/or to beat out the "other guy" with more height or more square feet.

We develop rules and regs to guide us. But "stuff" happens. Barges hit bridges in Louisiana and trains roll into the water. Ships hit bridges in Tampa Bay and unsuspecting drivers drive off and to their deaths. Roofs collapse in Russia, killing many.

To be perfectly safe we would have to resort to doing nothing.

Bear
 

H

Cyburbian
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2,850
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Favorite bridges (mostly for sentimental reasons) in order:

1. The George Rogers Clark Memorial Bridge or “Indiana Bridge” from Louisville to Jeffersonville:



2. The Hernando De Soto Bridge or the “Memphis Bridge”:



3. A great rail bridge in north Mississippi over the Tallahatchie River:



4. The “Palatka Bridge” over the St Johns in Palatka, FL for the Soldier Gargoyles. Sorry, no official name or photo.
 

freewaytincan

Cyburbian
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125
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Bear Up North said:
As the speaker said, "The Craig Memorial (draw) Bridge goes up about six-hundred times a year and goes back down about five-hundred and ninety-five times."
Whoa...how does that work?

Anyway, I am a big fan of the Sunshine Skyway (the new one) and most of the bridges in the city of bridges: Pittsburgh. They have some absolutely amazing ones there.
 

mendelman

Unfrozen Caveman Planner
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Being in Chicago, I've got beautiful and gritty and steel bridges everywhere:

I cross this bridge everyday on my commute:


It's the Cortland Street Drawbridge over the North Branch of The Chicago River.

It's a City Landmark and was built in 1902. It still has its originial bridge house.
You can read about it here: Cortland Street Drawbridge

All the other bridges in the city are great INFRASTRUCTURE!

Here's a sample:
Bridges over the Chicago River in Downtown Chicago

A typical bridge in a Chicago industrial area (probably on the Southside)

The Skyway Bridge
 
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donk

Cyburbian
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New Brunswick is the cover bridge capital of the world. Lots of neat old wood bridges around, including the one that was on the Canadian quarter for awhile.

Locally, I like our old steel bridge, the morrissy bridge. It is barely 2 lanes wide and has piles of broken mirrors on each end, silly SUV drivers. :)

It is on the list of things that I need to photograph before I leave.
 

michaelskis

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20,169
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51
Macinac is the one I love to look at... but it scares me to drive over it... I also hear that among the several accidents and deaths, one guy fell into the concrete mix and is in the footing for the bridge.

 

Wannaplan?

Bounty Hunter
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3,212
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29
Love Affair With Beau Bridges

Whew! For a second there I thought the title of this thread was called Love Affair With Beau Bridges.

 

biscuit

Cyburbian
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freewaytincan said:
Anyway, I am a big fan of the Sunshine Skyway (the new one) and most of the bridges in the city of bridges: Pittsburgh. They have some absolutely amazing ones there.
Oh yeah, we've got 'em in spades around here. Honestly there are amost more bridges than we can maintain. There are some real beauties in the area and this is a great website with pics of many of them. Pittsburgh Bridges

The New River Gorge Bridge in Fayetteville, West Virginia is another favorite simply because of it's size (longest steel span in the world) and beautiful natural setting.

One other I really like is the James Island Connector over the Ashley River in Charleston, SC. Not because it's beautiful or anything - it's nothing more than a tall concrete highway span - but because the view from there over Charleston Harbor and the city at sunset is simply amazing.
 

Plannerbabs

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Sorry, don't have photos or names (yet), but my two favorites would have to be the bridge from Madison, IN over to Kentucky. Tall, very narrow, good views, always makes me a bit nervous to drive over it. The other one is the one leading into Astoria, OR over the Columbia. It's huge. Tall, to let freighters pass underneath, and very long. Not sure where it stands in terms of "country's longest" or "country's tallest", but it's got to be on the list somewhere, plus the view into Astoria is beautiful.
 

FueledByRamen

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449
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Here's the Capitol of Texas (Highway 360) bridge. I dont know the official name of it though. This bridge was built, I think, in 1980. This highway goes through the western edge of the Austin SMSA which is right along the edge of the Hill Country. The road is a nice drive even though it feeds many corporate campuses and helps sprawl, of course. Its still purty though ;-)

 

Maroon

Cyburbian
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Plannerbabs said:
Sorry, don't have photos or names (yet), but my two favorites would have to be the bridge from Madison, IN over to Kentucky. Tall, very narrow, good views, always makes me a bit nervous to drive over it
 

Maroon

Cyburbian
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45
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2
Covered Bridge Capital of the World?

donk said:
New Brunswick is the cover bridge capital of the world. Lots of neat old wood bridges around, including the one that was on the Canadian quarter for awhile.
It appears that New Brunswick has 64 covered bridges.

Parke County, Indiana claims to have the highest concentration of covered bridges in the world, with 32 in one county.

I grew up near the oldest bridge (maybe) in Indiana, Burnett's Creek Arch (no photo available). It was built as an aqueduct for the Wabash and Erie Canal in the 1830s, abandonned for a time, and then used to cary a county highway over the creek.

 

Maroon

Cyburbian
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Plannerbabs said:
Maroon--thanks. Would that photo be before or after the Great Flood of '37?
I believe that view is from 1930.

Wouldn't you love to use this bridge (in 1922) that preceeded it?

 

DecaturHawk

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880
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While not yet built, the planned 1-70 bridge over the Mississippi at St. Louis will be an awesome bridge--the longest clear span bridge over the Big Muddy. Check out the website at newriverbridge.org

14192_flipbk1.jpg

Among existing modern bridges, a favorite is the Clark Bridge over the Mississippi at Alton, Illinois:

1419clark_bridge_2.jpg

The graceful arch of the Julien Dubuque Bridge at Dubuque, Iowa is one of my favorite among classic, older bridges. Due to being only two lanes wide, this bridge will, alas, be replaced within the near future.

1419juliendubuquebridge3-med.jpg
 

biscuit

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I'm with Crdinal in liking the older steel truss bridges nicer than the newer concrete ones. However, those steel truss structures can have a limited use life and require a lot of expensive maintainance.

Here is a rendering of the new Cooper River Bridge currently under construction in Charleston, SC. When it is complete it will replace the two obsolete steel truss bridges now in use, and will be the longest cable stay bridge in North America.
 
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BKM

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The Bay Area is kinda bridge central right now for new bridges. They are building the replacement span for the eastern part of the Bay Bridge, and the I-680 bridge between Contra Costa and Solano Counties right now.

They just opened the Zampa bridge in Novermber. I like it, but it very, very spare and austere.

 

ilikefish0

Cyburbian
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204
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I have two bridges I'd like to propose. First, the Hale Boggs Memorial bridge in Destrehan, LA:

This bridge looks really graceful (just 12 cables off of each pylon) in a way that most US cable-stayed bridges are not. Since its complestion it has also weathered to a handsome patina (wish I had a closer picture).

As honorable mention, I must include the Huey P. Long bridge of Jefferson, LA (or, as I affectioantely call it, the world's longest bridge made entirely of rust):

Nine (9) foot wide lanes and a railway span in the center make this a must drive. No trucks passing trucks and it shakes when the train crosses.
 
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