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BNSF - Bellefontaine Bridge

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Photos 

Overview

Photo taken by James Baughn

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Map 

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Facts 

Overview
Four-span through truss bridge over the Missouri River on the BNSF Railway, next to US 67
Location
St. Louis County, Missouri, and St. Charles County, Missouri
Status
Open to one track of railroad traffic
History
Construction started July 4, 1892, with the first train crossing on Dec. 27, 1893
Builders
- Benjamin L. Crosby (Resident engineer)
- George S. Morison of New Bedford, Massachusetts (Consulting engineer)
- New Jersey Steel & Iron Works (Fabrication)
Design
Four 16-panel Baltimore through trusses with a deck supporting two railroad tracks
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 440.0 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+38.84357, -90.23616   (decimal degrees)
38°50'37" N, 90°14'10" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/739872/4303048 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Columbia Bottom
Land survey
T. 47 N., R. 7 E., Sec. 9
Inventory number
BH 22615 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • October 12, 2013: New photo from Joe Leets
  • September 14, 2008: New photos from James Baughn
  • June 4, 2008: New photos from James Baughn

Sources 

  • HAER MO-26 - Bellefontaine Bridge
  • HAER NE-2 - (Behemoths: The Great River Bridges of George S. Morison)
  • James Baughn - webmaster [at] bridgehunter [dot] com
  • Wikipedia

Comments 

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted September 24, 2010, by Albert E. Bertram (abertram8297 [at] charter [dot] net)

Although I don't watch it on a daily basis, I believe the rail traffic on the bridge is relatively light, especially since the MKT railroad was abandoned back in 1985. It mostly is used for unit coal trains for the Portage Des Sioux power plant on the Mississippi River. I suspect that if that ever stopped, the BNSF might build a connection south along Missouri 79 to the Norfolk & Southern line that goes through St. Charles and abandon the "dog leg" it has to make to service the Portage Des Sioux power plant. But, that doesn't seem likely to happen.

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted March 27, 2010, by James Baughn (webmaster [at] bridgehunter [dot] com)

Scott: The best option is to park near the end of the offramp on the south end of the highway bridge. In summer, there are some trees in the way, but it's still a pretty good view and doesn't require trespassing.

I haven't explored the north end, but it might be possible to drive or hike along the levee to reach the bridge. I don't know if the levee road is gated or not.

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted March 27, 2010, by Scott (stiek [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Does anyone know how much rail traffic this bridge gets? And are there any good spots (easy to get to and not private property) to take photos of the trains on the bridge? Thanks!

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted March 22, 2010, by Mark Dellbringge (markdellbringge [at] netzero [dot] net)

This bridge carries the BNSF Railroad over the Missouri River.

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted February 22, 2010, by Scott (stiek [at] Hotmail [dot] com)

I don't get out there often but the only thing I can recall seeing is BNSF units.

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted January 3, 2010, by Ralph Grant (ralph [at] thegrantz [dot] com)

You can see additional pictures of this bridge here:

http://ralphegrant.com/WordpressBlog/2010/01/03/bellefontaine-bridge-1893/

Enjoy!

Bellefontaine Bridge
Posted July 14, 2009, by jack (jackkav [at] sbcglobal [dot] net)

WHAT RAILROADS RUN ON HERE?