4 votes

Metcalf Place Bridge


Overview, from the Southern end

Photo taken by Joshua Collins in January 2010


BH Photo #154147



This route was originally the road between Fort Leavenworth and Fort Scott, Kansas, dating from the early days of Kansas statehood. This crossing has had at least four bridges during that time. There is an old abutment next to this 1929 span, along with a bypass to the east built in 1960 and another four lane alignment to the west. This iron bridge deserves better than it's getting right now and may be saved as the city expands towards it and the old US 69 becomes more popular with cyclists.


Five-span pony truss bridge over Blue River on Metcalf Place (formerly US 69)
Overland Park, Johnson County, Kansas
Closed to all traffic
Built 1929, bypassed 1960
Warren pony truss with alternating verticals
Length of largest span: 69.9 ft.
Total length: 358.8 ft.
Deck width: 20.0 ft.
Also called
Blue River Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+38.81296, -94.67094   (decimal degrees)
38°48'47" N, 94°40'15" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/354925/4297347 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Land survey
T. 14 S., R. 25 E., Sec. 19
900 ft. above sea level
Average daily traffic (as of 2007)
Inventory number
BH 17878 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of February 2008)
Overall condition: Poor
Substructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Serious (3 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 2 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • October 2, 2017: New photo from Nick Schmiedeler
  • January 7, 2017: New photos from Nick Schmiedeler
  • July 20, 2011: Updated by Clark Vance: More photos and description.
  • February 8, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Edited Design and Design Description.
  • February 2, 2010: New photos from Joshua Collins


  • Joshua Collins - Bigjc1979 [at] aol [dot] com
  • Robert Elder - robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Clark Vance - cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com
  • Nick Schmiedeler - nick [at] nickschmiedeler [dot] com


Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted January 30, 2018, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

Sorry--last paragraph refers to the Blue River crossing. As far as I know the Tomahawk creek crossing wasn't realigned and there are no traces of the older truss bridge.

The Jefferson Highway is marked as passing through Lee's Summit at some period in its history.

Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted January 30, 2018, by Don Hassinger (kcjayhawk1995 [at] yahoo [dot] com)


Thanks for the updated information. From what I have researched the original military post road made a crossing at the Blue River before heading south towards the Louisburg area. Old Metcalfe Ave was part of the original Jefferson Highway and from what I understand this highway was very close if not part of the original military highway. I was not aware of the stone pillars at 135th and Tomahawk creek. Are they visible from that intersection and have you seen them?

Once the weather get's warmer my son and I are going to hike some areas near the Blue River along the Old Metcalf Place bridge and see what we can find.


Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted January 26, 2018, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

The Fort Leavenworth-Fort Gibson Road followed a number of alignments, not well mapped or recorded from what I can find. As I have heard over the years, US 69 ran roughly along the route of the old Military Road but often along improved alignments, making use of improved road building technology.

Some 30-40 years ago they did some road work near the now replaced truss carrying old US 69 (Metcalf Place) over Tomahawk Creek north of 135th Street. Beneath the two lane concrete pavement they found brick pavement that supposedly had once carried the military road.

The stone piers to the west of this bridge carried something but what it was called during the time the bridge existed is not easily found.

Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted January 25, 2018, by Don Hassinger (kcjayhawk1995 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Does anyone know if the "Original Military Post Road" crossed at this location at the Blue River? Any information would be helpful, thank you.

Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted October 3, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Yes, I remember that other bridge getting replaced. That was a bad deal from a preservation standpoint. For those who don't remember, a hiking trail briefly reused a historic pony truss but then the pony truss was demolished and replaced with a MOB.

Hopefully Johnson County will make a better decision this time around and maintain the historic bridge if this old roadbed should become a trail at some point.

Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted October 3, 2017, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

As residential neighborhoods move south toward this area, there may be some interest in rehabbing into a park/trail feature. Johnson County certainly has the money but they tore out a nice pony and replaced it with a MOB here:


so they may not have anyone advocating for saving the old ones.

Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted October 2, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

...and the award for most overgrown bridge in America goes to...

Metcalf Place Bridge
Posted February 12, 2010, by Eric Kinkhorst (e [dot] kinkhorst [at] centurytel [dot] net)

Crossed this bridge many times as a kid. Good to see it is still there.