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New Sharon Bridge

Photos 

New Sharon Truss Bridge

Photo taken by C Hanchey in October 2009

Enlarge

BH Photo #148035

Map 

Street View 

Description 

At the time of demolition, this was the last known surviving pin-connected highway truss in the entire state of Maine.

Facts 

Overview
Through truss bridge over Sandy River on Town Way in New Sharon
Location
New Sharon, Franklin County, Maine
Status
Demolished on February 27, 2014.
History
Built 1916 by the Groton Bridge Co., Demolished on February 27, 2014.
Builder
- Groton Bridge Co. of Groton, New York
Design
Pennsylvania through truss
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 263.1 ft.
Total length: 268.1 ft.
Deck width: 18.4 ft.
Also called
Sandy River Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+44.63806, -70.01500   (decimal degrees)
44°38'17" N, 70°00'54" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
19/419500/4943245 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
New Sharon
Inventory numbers
ME 2608 (Maine bridge number)
NRHP 99001189 (National Register of Historic Places reference number)
BH 19839 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection (as of 12/2007)
Deck condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Superstructure condition rating: Imminent Failure (1 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Imminent Failure (1 out of 9)
Appraisal: Structurally deficient
Sufficiency rating: 19.0 (out of 100)
Average daily traffic (as of 2007)
152

Update Log 

  • May 9, 2017: New photo from Chester Gehman
  • February 28, 2014: Updated by Nathan Holth: Added detail about bridge significance and demolition date.
  • February 28, 2014: Updated by Luke Harden: Demolished
  • November 22, 2013: Updated by Nathan Holth: This bridge is now doomed.
  • April 13, 2010: New Street View added by Nathan Holth
  • October 23, 2009: Updated by C Hanchey: Bridge is on the National Register; Added bridge builder

Sources 

Comments 

New Sharon Bridge
Posted November 7, 2017, by Anonymous

... and of course Maine didn't care about that.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted November 6, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

National Register Nomination form attached.

Attachment #1 (application/pdf; 149,898 bytes)

New Sharon Bridge
Posted March 1, 2014, by J.P. (wildcatjon2000 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Fail.....

New Sharon Bridge
Posted March 1, 2014, by ben of the marsh

pardon moi about the idiots in the background in the video.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted March 1, 2014, by ben of the marsh
New Sharon Bridge
Posted February 28, 2014, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

There is now not a SINGLE surviving pin-connected highway truss bridge in the entire state of Maine! Shameful!

New Sharon Bridge
Posted February 28, 2014, by donna d. (wildapple7 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Gone! Brought down yesterday, Feb 27th. Good article in both The Daily Bulldog and The Morning Sentinel. Watched it go, rather sad.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted January 8, 2014, by K. A. Erickson

If you have to ask why Anonymous you probably voted for him, Paul "Child labor laws cause damage to our economy" LePage.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted December 31, 2013, by Anonymous

Regarding the comment below,WHY??????????!!!!!!!!!!!!

New Sharon Bridge
Posted December 31, 2013, by Anonymous

Just open it to pedestrians. Keep the bridge up. Oh,and by the way,I hate Paul Lepage.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted December 19, 2013, by Steven W Lindsey (SteveLindsey60 [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Governor LaPage's Maine is not much into culture, historic preservation or the environment.

See: http://www.onlinesentinel.com/news/Historic_New_Sharon_bridg...

November 15

Historic New Sharon bridge will be torn down by the state

Multiple efforts to restore the bridge failed from a lack of funding.

By Kaitlin Schroeder kschroeder@centralmaine.com

Staff Writer

NEW SHARON — A nearly 100-year old iron bridge downtown will be demolished after the three-person select board unanimously approved the state’s offer to demolish the structure.

click image to enlarge

OLD BRIDGE: New Sharon selectmen unanimously voted Wednesday night to tear down this 94-year-old bridge in the downtown. Maine Department of Transportation offered to tear it down with no cost to the town, but said if New Sharon continued trying to restore it and it collapsed then the town would have to pay for the clean up.

Staff photo by Michael G. Seamans

click image to enlarge

OLD BRIDGE: New Sharon selectmen unanimously voted Wednesday night to tear down this 94-year-old bridge in the downtown.

Staff photo by Michael G. Seamans

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The Maine Department of Transportation department told the town that the Sandy River bridge is in imminent danger of falling into the river, and said the state will pay to have it removed.

If the town had rejected the offer and the bridge collapsed, residents would have been responsible for clean up costs and any damage downstream from the collapse, according to the department.

There is no timeline yet for the state to remove the bridge and state transportation officials are working to obtain the necessary permits, said Maynard Webster, chairman of the select board, which voted on the bridge demolition Wednesday.

Selectman Forrest Bonney said while a couple residents suggested waiting until the annual Town Meeting to let the voters weigh in on the state’s offer, he said selectmen couldn’t take the chance.

“It’s a great liability for the town,” he said.

The bridge, located parallel to the newer U.S. Route 2 bridge, was built in 1916 and is on the National Register of Historic Places. The bridge is one of the last remaining bridges of its type of construction and the only one of its construction type in the state on the registry.

There have been multiple efforts to repair the bridge, but the efforts failed from a lack of funding.

Selectmen said a recent inspection by the transportation department revealed significant vertical cracking in the south abutment, leaving the bridge vulnerable to collapse into the river.

Bonney said most people who led a serious effort to restore the bridge have died.

Resident Kirk Butterfield, 55, said he thought the selectmen should not have made the decision to let the state tear it down, and should have instead had the voters decide at the annual Town Meeting.

Butterfield said he disagreed that the decision needed to be made immediately to prevent a collapse.

“I’m willing to bet it’s not a crisis situation,” he said.

Resident Anisa Welch, 48, said she supports the selectmen’s decision to pass the liability from the bridge on to the state, but said she understands why some residents have a hard time with it.

“It’s an emotional attachment,” she said. “That bridge, it is New Sharon.”

Selectmen estimated it would cost at least $2 million to repair the bridge.

Road Commissioner John Pond said the town hardly has the money to pay for necessary infrastructure work such as rebuilding roads, much less for restoring a defunct bridge.

“We can’t raise money for the roads, why spend it on this bridge?” he said.

Webster, longtime chairman of the select board, said he worked on several efforts to save the bridge, but said the time for saving it has passed.

“No one wanted it saved more than me, but it’s just not in the cards,” he said.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted November 22, 2013, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Maine is the shame of New England. This have demolished a magnificent David Steinman suspension bridge, the Waldo-Hancock Bridge, and have demolished the landmark Memorial Bridge, a Waddell vertical lift masterpiece. Now, Maine is on track to not have a SINGLE example of a pin-connected highway truss in the entire state, with plans to demolish this bridge in place! Can you imagine an entire state in the eastern USA without a single pin-connected truss bridge?! Absolutely pathetic!

New Sharon Bridge
Posted July 19, 2012, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Yes, I was surprised to learn this as well. The fact is documented in the state context portion of the state historic bridge inventory. The irony is that right next to Maine in New Hampshire one can find a cast iron 1880s bridge, and an 1880s pin-connected lenticular truss, as a couple examples.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted July 19, 2012, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That is a stunning statistic! You would think that Maine would have a large collection of pin-connected trusses as it is on the East Coast (ie large population in the mid-late 19th century), and has lots of rivers and coastal inlets.

New Sharon Bridge
Posted July 17, 2012, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

To clarify the significance of this bridge this is listed as the only remaining pin-connected thru truss highway bridge in the entire state!