VERMONT COVERED BRIDGE
The bright red Vermont Covered Bridge in Highland Park is the final remaining Smith Type #3 Trusses in Indiana. The bridge is a transplant from the town of Vermont, which is about 5 miles east of Kokomo.
After surviving floods, at least one arson attempt and a reckless coal delivery driver, the Vermont Covered Bridge was threatened by another prominent covered bridge destroyer. In 1957, plans for the new Kokomo Reservoir called for flooding the valley at the bridge site. The old wooden bridge was to be replaced with a wider and longer concrete span, built on higher ground.
The late M.E.White, then president of the Howard County Historical Society, proposed moving the span to one of Kokomo's parks. It is mostly through his efforts that the bridge has been preserved. The total cost of moving the bridge was under $3,500. The Kokomo Parks Department constructed the new abutments for the covered bridge.
In January of 1992, through the Parks Department, the bridge received a new shake roof. In the fall of 2004, the bridge received a new coat of paint. The Vermont Covered Bridge is open to foot traffic during the summer months. The bridge is located in Highland Park.
At some point in the 1990's, the city decided to correct a severe bow that was growing in the structure due to it's immense weight. 2 new piers and steel trusses were sandwiched under bridge to correct this problem. As can be seen in photos, they are painted red like the rest of the main structure to hide their appearance. This has been a godsend due to the constant spring flooding the bridge has endured for many years by Kokomo Creek. It is amazing the lower levels of this bridge haven't rotted away with all the times I can remember it being in the water in the lowland area.
I might add, that in all my years as a youngster and teen in Kokomo, I have only seen the chain link gates on either portal opened maybe 2 or 3 times. City Parks department used to store their picnic tables inside during winter months which didn't help with the aforementioned bowing problem. When they were removing or replacing these tables was when I would see the gates open. I have heard that back before my time, locals were allowed to walk across regulary, but I can not confirm you can do it today despite claim by City Of Kokomo's website.
It is still worth a drive to Highland Park on West Defenbaugh Street to view this bridge and it's beauty.