4 votes

Illinois Street Bridge


View from the West

Photo taken by John Weller in February 2009

BH Photo #134457



Concrete arch bridge over Fall Creek on Illinois Street in Indianapolis
Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana
Future prospects
Project to construct a modern, non-Melan type bridge is underway. Some stones from the historic bridge's decorative facing may be incorporated into the non-historic modern replacement bridge.
Built 1899
- Hoosier Bridge
- Melan Arch Construction Co.
Closed-spandrel concrete arch with Melan reinforcing and decorative stone facing. Melan reinforcement was a rolled i-beam type.
Length of largest span: 83.3 ft.
Total length: 237.8 ft.
Deck width: 40.0 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.80250, -86.15889   (decimal degrees)
39°48'09" N, 86°09'32" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/572003/4406175 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Indianapolis West
Average daily traffic (as of 2014)
Inventory numbers
INNBI 4900214 (Indiana bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory)
BH 16569 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of August 2018)
Overall condition: Good
Superstructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Good (7 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 69.9 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • August 6, 2020: New photo from Tony Dillon
  • March 12, 2018: New photos from Dave King
  • August 14, 2013: Updated by Nathan Holth: This bridge has been demolished.
  • March 12, 2013: Updated by Nathan Holth: Bridge to be rehabbed.
  • December 21, 2012: Updated by Clark Vance: Removed category "George E. Kessler"
  • December 20, 2012: Updated by Clark Vance: Added category "George E. Kessler"
  • December 20, 2012: Updated by J.P.: added builders
  • February 23, 2010: New photos from J.P.
  • February 28, 2009: New photos from John Weller


  • John Weller - jweller [at] indy [dot] rr [dot] com
  • J.P. - wildcatjon2000 [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Nathan Holth
  • Dave King - DKinghawkfan [at] hotmail [dot] com
  • Tony Dillon - spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com


Illinois Street Bridge
Posted August 15, 2013, by Jim Grey (mobilene [at] gmail [dot] com)

Aieee! How did I miss this? I live nearby and I had no idea.

The Indiana historic bridges program can be subject to horse trading, by which I mean that a Select bridge can go through a process to be classified as Non-Select under some circumstances. I know of a Select bridge in Shelby Co. with a collapsed arch where this is being pursued. I don't know that this is what happened to this bridge here. But I do know that when counties agree to protect select bridges, they can bypass burdensome and expensive federal processes when they want to remove or replace non-select bridges. If Marion County demolished this bridge without first getting it reclassified as Non-Select, they lose the right to bypass those processes.

Illinois Street Bridge
Posted August 14, 2013, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

This is a tragic loss and does certainly show that Indiana's Historic Bridge program still needs some work to try and prevent this from happening. I realize that space is limited there, but this one should have been bypassed at the very least.

Illinois Street Bridge
Posted August 14, 2013, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

This 1899 Melan Arch, one of the oldest concrete bridges in the country, has been demolished. This bridge was a Select Bridge under the Indiana Historic Bridge Management Plan, however as the photos I added to the gallery indicate, this is not a rehabilitation project and this indicates that Indiana's Management Plan does not prevent the demolition of bridges labeled as Select. The planned incorporation of the decorative stone facing design into the replacement bridge does not qualify as rehabilitation, nor does it qualify as replication, since the new bridge will not feature Melan type reinforcing.

Illinois Street Bridge
Posted December 20, 2012, by J.P. (wildcatjon2000 [at] gmail [dot] com)

First time I noticed, I loaded the wrong photos to this bridge. The plaque and the photo before it belong to a different bridge which I will have to figure out.