Photo taken by Ben Tate in February 2012
BH Photo #225909
Orgin of bridge name
Written by Nick Boppel. Reuse of text exactly as written permitted .
I provided the following information to HistoricBridges.org about the origin of the name "Sunshine Bridge" and I figured I should probably provide it here too.
The bridge was constructed while renowned Louisiana singer and songwriter-turned-governor Jimmie Davis was in office. Davis rose to popularity as a singer with his hit song "You are My Sunshine". As governor, Davis was one of the strongest supporters of the bridge construction, as well as the proposed Arcadian Thruway (the toll highway that was meant to connect New Orleans with Lafayette while bypassing Baton Rouge). Obviously, the Arcadian Thruway was never built, but the Sunshine Bridge was a major component of the proposed project. When a name for the bridge was being sought, the then-retired Governor Davis declined an offer to have the named directly for him, and therefore it was named the "Sunshine Bridge" in reference to Davis' popular song (as there was strong support to memorialize Davis with the bridge in some way shape or form).
- Through truss bridge over the Mississippi River on LA 70
- St. James Parish, Louisiana
- Open to traffic
- Built 1963, opened October 12, 1964. The bridge was a toll bridge until 1979 but tolls were reinstated in 1989 before being removed for good in 1999 when the bridge's debt was paid.
- Cantilever through truss
Length of largest span: 824.9 ft.
Total length: 9,099.7 ft. (1.7 mi.)
Deck width: 63.3 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 15.6 ft.
Eligible for the National Register of Historic Places
- Approximate latitude, longitude
- +30.09833, -90.91167 (decimal degrees)
30°05'54" N, 90°54'42" W (degrees°minutes'seconds")
- Approximate UTM coordinates
- 15/701238/3331521 (zone/easting/northing)
- Quadrangle map:
- Average daily traffic (as of 2015)
- Inventory number
- BH 19108 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
- Inspection report (as of March 2017)
- Overall condition: Fair
Superstructure condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 41.8 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com
- May 9, 2020: Essay added by Nick Boppel
- August 1, 2013: New photos from M. D. Caillet
- June 16, 2013: New photos from M. D. Caillet
- February 24, 2012: New photos from Ben Tate
- April 19, 2010: New Street View added by Nathan Holth