Rating:
6 votes

Waterford Bridge

Photos 

Oblique view

Photo taken by Matthew Lohry in July 2009

Enlarge

BH Photo #154175

Map 

Street View 

A Technical Overview... 

Written by Matthew Lohry

There are many reasons to allow this bridge to live on—first of all, V-lacing abounds, adding to the intricacy and beauty of the structure overall. V-lacing exists under the upper chord, on the vertical truss members (with the V-lacing facing the roadway rather than either end), on the sway bracing, and even the bottom chord! The truss’s built-up diagonal members are of the batten-type. The portals are of the typical A-frame design used during this era of bridge building.
Some of the photographs show square-head bolts rather than rivets for connections. Apparently, these are original, as bridge building standards (at least in Minnesota) did not yet require all-riveted connections. The steel was manufactured by Jones & Laughlin.
Another interesting feature is that the concrete deck (which is overlaid with asphalt) is of the jack-arch type. Unfortunately, the deck is deteriorating quite badly in some locations and has holes along the edges. The abutments are made of concrete and are suffering from mild deterioration. The superstructure, however, appears to be in relatively good condition and is perfectly restorable (at least in my estimation).
I hope that whoever steps up to restore this rare and beautiful piece of civil engineering history removes the horribly ugly beams that were welded across either portal to restrict the height!
Dakota County is in the process of realigning the roadway and constructing a concrete slab several hundred feet west of this historic structure. Fortunately for us historic bridge lovers, the county is allowing the historic bridge to remain in its current location for potential use as a bike and pedestrian trailway! The Dakota County Website says “possible future rehabilitation”, which tells me that no plans to rehabilitate are in place at this time. Hopefully, someone with the funds will step up and take on this vital task.
I would like to point out that as my two boys and I were under the bridge throwing rocks into the river, two cars passed over, and I would have never known if I had not seen the cloud of dust from the gravel road! Normally you would hear some sort of vibration or slight rocking, but not here! I think the bridge is sturdier than people give it credit for.

Facts 

Overview
Through truss bridge over Cannon River on CR 166 Canada Ave.
Location
Dakota County, Minnesota
Status
Bypassed by a new bridge in 2010. Bridge open to pedestrians only.
Future prospects
This bridge was replaced by a concrete slab bridge but remains in place as a pedestrian bridge with chances of being reincorporated in a bike trail in the near future.
History
Built 1909; made obsolete by a new bridge in 2010, won SavingPlaces grant and fortified substructure: remains intact for pedestrian use
Builders
- BACH Steel of Holt, Michigan (Abutment/Wing Wall Repair)
- Chas A. Forbes (Designer)
- Hennepin Bridge Co. of Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Workin' Bridges/NSRGA of Grinnell, Iowa
Design
The camelback through truss is a variation of the Parker through truss, the difference being that the upper chord of a camelback has exactly five sides, including the end posts, whereas a parker has more than five sides, giving the top of the upper chord a more curved appearance.
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 137.1 ft.
Total length: 143.1 ft.
Deck width: 15.4 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 7.7 ft.
Recognition
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on August 26, 2010
Also called
Cannon River Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+44.48750, -93.12833   (decimal degrees)
44°29'15" N, 93°07'42" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/489795/4926028 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Northfield
Inventory numbers
MN L3275 (Minnesota bridge number)
NRHP 10000580 (National Register of Historic Places reference number)
BH 20349 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection (as of 01/2009)
Deck condition rating: Critical (2 out of 9)
Superstructure condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Appraisal: Structurally deficient
Sufficiency rating: 0.0 (out of 100)
Average daily traffic (as of 1996)
125

Update Log 

  • October 10, 2016: Updated by Christopher Finigan: Added category "Riveted"
  • August 31, 2014: Updated by Julie Bowers: updated status and company
  • November 25, 2013: New Street View added by J.P.
  • January 16, 2013: Updated by Luke Harden: Added builder.
  • August 28, 2011: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been bypassed by a new bridge but is open to pedestrians only.
  • September 4, 2010: Updated by James Baughn: Posted to the National Register
  • April 13, 2010: Essay added by Matthew Lohry
  • February 2, 2010: Updated by Matthew Lohry: Added photos, updated name and status information
  • June 6, 2009: Updated by Brian McKee: Modified road name

Sources 

  • Luke
  • Brian McKee - bjmckee51 [at] yahoo [dot] com
  • Matt Lohry
  • Jason Smith - flensburg [dot] bridgehunter [dot] av [at] googlemail [dot] com
  • J.P. - wildcatjon2000 [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Julie Bowers - jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com

Comments 

Waterford Bridge
Posted June 19, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Holding.

Waterford Bridge
Posted June 12, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Finished. A Workin' Bridges Success Story.

Waterford Bridge
Posted May 30, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

New wing wall. Bach in tomorrow to reset.

Waterford Bridge
Posted April 19, 2014, by Anonymous

Where's your hard hats?

Waterford Bridge
Posted March 28, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com@)

Thawing complete, work started. Workin' Bridges team of BACH Steel and Healy Construction for Waterford Township.

Waterford Bridge
Posted March 12, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Funding Confirmed. Replacement of the south east wing wall with a lift from the top designed by Nels Raynor and Jim Schiffer, PE. starts now with fabrication of the lift beam at Bach Steel in Holt, Mi. Mike Healy of Healy Construction in Faribault is the concrete contractor.

The team was put together by Workin' Bridges collaborating with Waterford Township in order to preserve their mandate for preservation of the historic bridge.

Waterford Bridge
Posted February 21, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The Township hired a good team to start the repairs to the abutment. Nels Raynor, Jim Schiffer and Healy Construction team up with Workin' Bridges to provide collaborative support to the township to get this project started.

We have all confidence that the first abutment will be repaired very soon. Stay tuned.

Waterford Bridge
Posted January 17, 2013, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The Township is grateful to Workin' Bridges and it's group of experts for getting the project moving forward. "Once contacted, Workin' Bridges has been instrumental in getting the experts involved and providing the Township with the necessary steps to proceed with a bidding process. Everyone involved has gone above our expectations with this project, and have been wonderful to work with." Liz Messner, Township Superviosr

Waterford Bridge
Posted January 16, 2013, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Invitation to Bid

Waterford Bridge
Posted December 11, 2012, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] commoving)

Creating the RFP for the design/build for this project based on the Scope of Work provided by the Workin' Bridges team. This is cool, it changes the conversation to targeted, affordable engineering, construction and craftsmanship for restorations.

Waterford Bridge
Posted November 19, 2012, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The team is assembling.....I have been at the bridge,,,,,,just to say Hey We Are Coming.....

Waterford Bridge
Posted November 15, 2012, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Workin' Bridges is delighted to announce we have been hired to perform a site visit next week in Minnesota with the goal of arriving at a bidding document, and a sealed estimate and schedule for the job. The team includes Bob Schwensen of Davis Construction Inc of Lansing, Michigan and Nels Raynor from BACH Steel, Holt, Michigan. Both have years of experience with all phases of bridge construction.

The Waterford Iron Bridge won a National Trust for Historic Preservation and American Express prize last year. Engineering did not result in a workable plan with regard to the grant proposal so Workin' Bridges goal is to provide a solution with targeted engineering and a plan for future phases for restoration.

Waterford Bridge
Posted November 14, 2012, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Workin' Bridges is delighted to announce we have been hired to perform a site visit next week in Minnesota with the goal of arriving at a bidding document, and a sealed estimate and schedule for the job. The team includes Bob Schwensen of Davis Construction Inc of Lansing, Michigan and Nels Raynor from BACH Steel, Holt, Michigan. Both have years of experience with all phases of bridge construction.

The Waterford Iron Bridge won a National Trust for Historic Preservation and American Express prize last year. Engineering did not result in a workable plan with regard to the grant proposal so Workin' Bridges goal is to provide a solution with targeted engineering and a plan for future phases for restoration.

Waterford Bridge
Posted November 11, 2011, by Jason Smith (JDSmith77 [at] gmx [dot] net)

Wow! That is one bit-time feat to receive the bronze and almost $100,000 for bridge repairs. Thanks for the message and I'll make note of it when I send a column to the Chronicles. It's a huge victory for the historic bridge community. :-D

Waterford Bridge
Posted November 10, 2011, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Good news! This bridge came in 3rd place for amount of funding awarded through the recent contest! It will get $95,000 to remove and replace the cracked southeast wing wall. http://www.twincities.com/ci_19307144

Waterford Bridge
Posted September 24, 2011, by Emily (thenerv34 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I grew up a mile from this great bridge! I spent countless hours playing on and around it. Those who live near it are in love with it! It is such a great piece of american civil engirneering!

Emily

Please Vote To Save This Historic Bridge!
Posted September 22, 2011, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Partners in Preservation is having a Facebook vote on 25 historic structures. Of all the 25 structures, only one is a historic bridge, the Waterford Iron Bridge. The bridge currently does not have a lot of votes. I am hoping everyone here at BridgeHunter would vote for the bridge. The list of structures is here: http://www.facebook.com/PartnersinPreservation?sk=app_141057... and here is a news article about the voting: http://northfield.patch.com/articles/waterford-iron-bridge-o...

It doesn't cost anything to vote. With a few minutes of time you can help save a historic bridge. Please vote for this and have all your friends do the same!