2 votes

Santa Fe Street Bridge


Photo taken by Mark Frazier


BH Photo #130287


Street View 


Bridge was built to carry railroad traffic, later relocated here.


Through truss bridge over the BNSF Railroad on Santa Fe Street in Sibley
Sibley, Jackson County, Missouri
Open to traffic
Future prospects
Slated for demolition and replacement in 2016.
Built Ca. 1888, Relocated Here 1912; rehabilitated 1998
Pin-connected, 9-panel Pratt through truss
Length of largest span: 163.0 ft.
Total length: 165.0 ft.
Deck width: 13.4 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 19.1 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.18547, -94.19631   (decimal degrees)
39°11'08" N, 94°11'47" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/396678/4338040 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Land survey
T. 51 N., R. 30 W., Sec. 34
Average daily traffic (as of 2017)
Inventory numbers
MONBI 23278 (Missouri bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory)
BH 21714 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of May 2018)
Overall condition: Poor
Superstructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 35 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • September 14, 2016: New photos from John Marvig
  • September 5, 2016: Updated by John Marvig: Added information
  • June 22, 2016: New photos from Clark Vance
  • December 7, 2014: Updated by Nathan Holth: This bridge is now doomed.
  • August 10, 2012: Updated by Clark Vance: Added category "Railroad"


  • Mark Frazier - mfrazier404 [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Nathan Holth
  • Clark Vance - cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com
  • John Marvig - marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com


Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted June 24, 2016, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

Maps show a bridge here for as long as there has been a railroad. This rail split the town with a deep cut which had to be spanned from the start.

If this bridge was placed here around 100 years ago it is at least the second here.

I don't know the history of this railroad but the bridge over the Little Blue River west of here was upgraded to two tracks at some time, making a span available for relocation.

(The soil around here is mostly loess which is wind blown dust, so very fine mineral particles. It makes evil mud.)

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted June 22, 2016, by John Marvig

I believe the bridge is a relocated span, repurposed for road use. The Santa Fe did other examples, including the 35th street bridge in Fort Madison, Iowa as well as a pair in Carroll County, Missouri. I am attempting to look into where it came from.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted June 22, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Nathan's description of the mud in this area is both hilarious and accurate. Having grown up with it, I suppose that I took it for granted. Needless to say,I have slid down a few banks in the area. I have also seen times when I got to a road and had to park and walk to the bridge.

Of course, a mud march can be quite rewarding when it leads to a wrought iron bridge.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted June 22, 2016, by Kelly McClanahan

I would have to agree, that it is unlikely an old railroad right of way. The oldest map (1935) clearly shows it much as it is today. I do have one question -- if (and when) they do replace the bridge, how are they going to reroute traffic? The entire area is isolated and completely cut off, since the E Atherton Sibley Rd was removed.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted June 22, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

No side/elevation views?! Just teasing, while I did manage to get some side views of this bridge, its not easy to get down to the tracks from the road... and I got an unpleasant surprise in doing so. I jumped down a small ledge down to the ground on what looked like regular dirt/mud, but it turned out to basically be like quicksand, and I sunk right up to my knees! Very messy! Its not the first time I have had this happen, but its certainly the first time its happened along railroad tracks where you don't expect liquefied soil to be in play.

On a side note, this region of the country (Western Missouri and eastern Kansas) has the most slippery river mud I have ever encountered in my life. I cannot tell you how many times I encountered mud that made freshly zambonied ice look like a high-traction surface.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted December 8, 2014, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

I hope I'm wrong but I believe that this will be the last automobile through truss in the county. We have lost a large number in the last 30 years.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted January 10, 2014, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

What railroads do is if they are required to build an overpass yet have a spare bridge sitting around from an old river crossing or something, they will create a one lane bridge of it.

One example is


This structure crosses former Illinois Central tracks in Vicksburg, Mississippi. The structure originated from the approach to the Dubuque Rail Bridge. Two separate spans have found their way around Dubuque County from this bridge as well, all being purposed.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted January 7, 2014, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

The railroad it crosses is the Santa Fe so they probably placed a bridge there when they made the cut. I've never seen evidence of a former RoW along this alignment.

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted January 7, 2014, by Don Morrison

Possibly an old ATSF ROW existed where Santa Fe Street is now?

Santa Fe Street Bridge
Posted January 6, 2014, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This bridge is very clearly an old railroad truss (that carried a railroad) due to its narrowness.