Overview Looking East
The swing span, normally parked in the open position, is on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River.
Photo taken by J.R. Manning in March 2011
BH Photo #195531
This is actually an interesting rehabilitation. It did not eliminate any significant historical components, while strengthening the bridge for years to come:
Reconstructing the eastern most span. Currently, after reviewing photos, it appears that the three western spans and the eastern span will have been reconstructed, with the swing span and the span directly west of the swing span being spared for now.
Well UP is talking about tearing down the Clinton bridge (even the side channel bridges) and a bridge in St. Paul, CP wants the bridge at La Crosse, WI gone, and the Sabula Rail Bridge. BNSF already took out the old Burlington Bridge.
Point is, class 1 railroads have a really bad history of destroying history, especially up in the midwest. Amazing UP would even have considered bulldozing that historic bridge in Eau Claire, WI.
I'm actually gonna go out on thin ice here and give CN credit for not completely removing the bridge. Keeping the frames and deck, as well as the connections is one of the more interesting things. It just makes you ask "why?"
But I will continue to watch the situation. I'll hope the best for this bridge
Canadian National would bulldoze the Pyramids of Egypt if they were in their way.
Look at the pictures of the westernmost span. Now look at these pictures.
The one thing that stands out to me on this bridge is the chords. The parker spans are cool, but some have much heavier bracing.
While looking further into it, I found that this is because Canadian National is cutting out the diagonal bracing of the old spans and replacing it with new bracing of the same pattern, only with plates connecting it in the middle.
So see the remaining original spans while you can. This could be part of a larger project, similar to the bridge at Burlington. There have been talks of replacing the swing span with a lift span....