Hennepin Bridge 1980's
Photo by Gene Smania
License: Released into public domain
BH Photo #249497
Actually, this bridge does not exist in any form. When the original was demolished near 2000, there was no replacement even considered.
Bridge plate from Hennepin Bridge.
In the mid-1960's J & L Steel built a plant at Hennepin, on the east side of the Illinois River. The State of Illinois built an interstate (designated I-180) to connect the plant to Interstate 80 to the north, which required building a new bridge across the Illinois River. The interstate bridge was upstream of the Rt 26 bridge and when the old bridge was closed in 1989 exit and entrance ramps were constructed from I-180 to Illinois Rt 26 to provide access to the west side of the river. The Rt 26 bridge was removed in 2001. Prior to the building of the Rt 26 bridge the only way to cross the river was by a ferry. Photos were taken in 1939 by Art Kistler, IDOT employee.