Rating:
5 votes

Rock Island - Armourdale Bridge

Photos 

View from north

Photo taken by James Baughn

Request this photo

BH Photo #103272

Map 

Street Views 

Facts 

Overview
Abandoned Pennsylvania through truss bridge over Kansas River on Abandoned Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad
Location
Kansas City, Wyandotte County, Kansas, and Jackson County, Missouri
Status
Closed to all traffic
History
Built 1905; abandoned in 1980s after the construction of Kemper Arena
Builder
- American Bridge Co. of New York
Railroad
- Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railroad (RI; CRIP; ROCK)
Design
Main spans: Two pin-connected, Pennsylvania through trusses with Camelback profile
East approach: Riveted Baltimore through truss
Flood jack lifting system
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 300.0 ft.
Total length: 740.0 ft.
Also called
Armourdale Bridge
RI - Kansas River Bridge
RI - Armourdale Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.09109, -94.60869   (decimal degrees)
39°05'28" N, 94°36'31" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/360875/4328116 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Kansas City
Inventory number
BH 18698 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • October 11, 2016: New photos from John Marvig
  • September 19, 2016: New Street View added by Dana and Kay Klein
  • September 12, 2016: New photos from John Marvig
  • September 5, 2016: Updated by John Marvig: Added information
  • January 1, 2014: Updated by Chris Knight: Rem Stockyards Bridge from the name list that is a Lost Bridge Downstream.
  • September 20, 2011: New photos from Jason Smith
  • May 11, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Edited History and Approach Design
  • March 9, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Added Street View link
  • July 21, 2009: Updated by Robert Elder: Added Pennsylvania truss and Baltimore truss to Categories.
  • April 25, 2008: Updated by Max Johnson
  • April 24, 2008: Updated by Max Johnson
  • April 23, 2008: Updated by Max Johnson
  • July 6, 2006: Posted new photos

Sources 

  • Robert Elder - robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Jason Smith - flensburg [dot] bridgehunter [dot] av [at] googlemail [dot] com
  • Luke
  • John Marvig - marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Dana and Kay Klein

Comments 

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted July 13, 2013, by Kevin Anderson (iamcreated [at] att [dot] net)

Kemper Arena end. For the tighter shot I was standing on the concrete levee.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted September 21, 2011, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

I don't get down there except when there is an event but I got on the first span when the place was full of cars from two simultaneous events. I spent around 45 minutes looking and taking pictures (posted someday...). No sign of security.

This bridge is designed to lift to the level of the top of the levee so that it could avoid flood water pressure. It's now raised and locked in place with bracing. There's some nice old machinery visible. If I had been able to skip the event for longer I would have tried to get up to the "office" for a look.

My guess is that the area is well patrolled when it is deserted. Obviously they are watching the buildings, and an individual alone out over the river suggests that they need to investigate. Copper theft is also keeping folks alert around structures with electrical equipment.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted September 21, 2011, by Luke Harden (lmharden [at] iastate [dot] edu)

It's probably like the MacArthur Bridge in St. Louis, you can get up there, it just depends on what time you try to get on it, and it also won't be easy.. Try at dawn-ish, but before first light, that way no one will (hopefully) see you get on the bridge.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted September 21, 2011, by luke (Fleming)

and idea if or how i can get on this bridge to take some pictures? a friend of mine tried a few years back and the cops didn't like it too much

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted May 11, 2010, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This bridge is listed as being in both Kansas City, KS and Kansas City, MO. I do not know if the bridge once had a longer approach on the eastern end, but in its current configuration it does not extend into Missouri.

I have not removed Kansas City, Missouri from location, because I am unfamiliar with any eastern approaches that may have been present on this bridge originally.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted January 3, 2010, by Anonymous

This bridge was not abandoned in 1972. I remember as a kid the railroad tracks wrapped around Kemper Arena through the parking lot and crossed the bridge. I do not remember when the tracks were officially taken up but it was in the early '80s.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted February 5, 2009, by David Crookham (Dboxerstwo [at] aol [dot] com)

This bridge was not abandoned in 1972 i spotted a potatoe car for Aright and sons around 1983 and used the bridge at that time shortly after it shut down .

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted December 13, 2007, by No need for my name

This photo contains 3 out all 4 Kansas River Railroad Bridges.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4 is at the bottom.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 3 is near the center of this photo. (Note the Cattle Chute Bridge between Bridge 3 & 4)

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 2 is at the top.

this photo was during the 1951 Kansas City Flood.

(The Central Ave. Bridge is also here, it is south of Railroad Bridge 2 and north of Bridge 3)

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted December 9, 2007, by Local

In the book

High and Rising: The 1951 Kansas City Flood

there is a photo with Rock Island rail cars filled with rock trying to save this bridge from the river waters and mud that are hitting it at high speed during the '51 flood.

this bridge is a reminder of how a steel bridge can take a beating.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted March 24, 2007, by Bill-KCKs

This bridge, as does one of the twin UP bridges, have screw-jack lifting mechanisms to allow the bridge to clear floodwaters. This bridge is now permanently in the UP position. The UP bridge jacks were last used in the 1993 flood; I can not recall their use previously in my lifetime.

I believe the High Line bridge also originally had screw jacks . I recall the conversion to the hydraulic system in the early 60's.

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted January 24, 2007, by Anonymous

It looks like this bridge has a vertical lift section but I don't see that mentioned anywhere here. What's that structure with the little house on top? Possibly the lift machinery?

Kansas River Railroad Bridge No. 4
Posted December 31, 2006, by Bob Franke (glad6813 [at] netzero [dot] net)

This bridge was used by the the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific to connect the Armourdale Yd to the various facilities in the West Bottoms of KC.