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US 66 Meramec River Bridge

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Photos 

Side view

Photo taken by Jack Schmidt

Map 

Street View 

MoDOT want to tear down history 

Written by Kim Harvey

KTVI Link

MoDOT is planning on tearing down this bridge, but local historians are against it.

Facts 

Overview
Deck truss bridge over Meramec River at Times Beach on Old US 66 in Wildwood
Location
Wildwood, St. Louis County, Missouri
Status
Closed to all traffic due to bridge being unsafe. Deck was removed in 2013 only the superstructure and piers currently remain.
Future prospects
MoDOT plans to demolish bridge when funding is available
History
Built in 1931, replacing the Votaw Bridge; made obsolete in 1968 by a new westbound I-44 bridge on a new alignment; deemed unsafe for vehicular / pedestrian traffic and closed on October 29th, 2009.
Builder
- Frazier-Davis Construction Co. (Contractor)
Design
Warren deck truss with all verticals
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 131.9 ft.
Total length: 1,008.9 ft.
Deck width: 29.8 ft.
Recognition
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on September 16, 2009
Also called
Times Beach Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+38.50550, -90.59217   (decimal degrees)
38°30'20" N, 90°35'32" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/709955/4264651 (zone/easting/northing)
Land survey
T. 44 N., R. 4 E., Sec. 32
USGS topographic map
Manchester
Inventory numbers
MoDOT J-421 (Missouri Dept. of Transportation bridge number)
MONBI 5387 (Missouri bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory)
NRHP 09000888 (National Register of Historic Places reference number)
BH 22651 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection (as of 07/2009)
Deck condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Superstructure condition rating: Serious (3 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Serious (3 out of 9)
Appraisal: Structurally deficient
Sufficiency rating: 36.6 (out of 100)
Average daily traffic (as of 2009)
2,640

Update Log 

  • March 31, 2014: Updated by Chris Knight: Updated the Status of the Bridge where the deck was removed.
  • December 22, 2011: New photo from John Christeson
  • August 19, 2011: New photos from Ben Tate
  • August 13, 2011: New photos from Sharon Spear
  • July 18, 2011: Updated by Mark Dellbringge: Modified history
  • April 29, 2011: New photos from James McCray
  • December 1, 2009: Essay added by Kim Harvey
  • October 28, 2009: Updated by David Backlin: Closed to all traffic
  • March 23, 2009: New photo from J Lance
  • March 23, 2009: Updated by Justin Zeid
  • July 27, 2008: New photo from Kim Harvey
  • April 7, 2006: Posted photos from Jack Schmidt

Related Bridges 

Sources 

Comments 

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted December 28, 2013, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

The demolition of this bridge is ridiculous. Glad I visited this bridge during a brief visit to this region this past fall. My site visit indicated that there was absolutely nothing seriously wrong with the superstructure. They could have put a new deck on and celebrated a piece of Route 66 history.

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted December 28, 2013, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)
Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted March 14, 2013, by Jayhawk

The last I heard the deck was removed to reduce the dead load and give the truss a better chance of surviving while money is found repairs. I suppose it's good news that someone cares enough to worry about tge deck - it's bad that this bridge is that close to collapsing.

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted March 14, 2013, by Fmiser (fmiser [at] gmail [dot] com)

I drove pasted yesterday. I did not have time to stop and check closely - but the deck has been removed. I also didn't see any stringers, but there might not have been any to begin with. I also could not tell if the work was "repair" or "remove"...

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted July 28, 2011, by John Regenbogen (info [at] scenicmo [dot] org)

Our stakeholder's effort received another important grant... this time from National Park Service's Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program. It will allow for the preparation of a much-needed Historic Structures Report. Along with the prior planning grant from National Trust for Historic Preservation, its a substantial step forward.

http://www.stltoday.com/suburban-journals/metro/news/article_1142e70d-cf02-574b-ba70-51ceba27f893.html

John Regenbogen

Scenic Missouri

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted March 31, 2011, by Sharon Spear (sweetsexysharon [at] gmail [dot] com)

That is awesome news! I know I will be writing a check to help out. I just hope this doesn't drag out for years.

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted March 30, 2011, by James McCray (jamesinslocomb [at] yahoo [dot] com)
Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted October 15, 2010, by Mark Dellbringge

This historic bridge became the westbound lanes of I-44 / U. S. 66, following opening of a new eastbound bridge in 1954. I remember going out to Meramec Caverns and crossing this bridge when the speed limit was 70 MPH on I-44. A new westbound span was added in the 1970's beside the eastbound bridge, making the Meramec River US 66 bridge obsolete. It is now one of only four Warren deck truss spans left in Missouri. Sad to see this go.

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted September 17, 2010, by Don (ibentruitt [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Demolition of the bridge is scheduled to begin in Feb 2012 unless a NEW OWNER comes forward.

MoDOT had a public meeting on Sept 13, 2010 supposedly to collect comments from attendees - they seemed to be set on tearing the bridge down with no plans to replace it.

The link below has some addition information MoDOT handed out to those that attended.

http://www.modot.org/stlouis/major_projects/Route66StateParkBridgeVirtualPublicMeeting.htm

This virtual public meeting offers information presented during a public meeting, sponsored by MoDOT, to talk about the future of the Route 66 Meramec River Bridge (also known as the Route 66 State Park Bridge) in Eureka. The bridge was closed in 2009 because of safety, and MoDOT needs to find an organization to accept liability for the bridge or MoDOT will need to remove it in the near future.

The meeting shared MoDOT's decision to close the bridge, information about the historic preservation process and the expected timeline for decisions on the bridge.

This information will remain available until September 30, 2010. People can make comments about the process below.

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted July 6, 2010, by Mark Dellbringge

http://www.modot.org/stlouis/major_projects/Route66StateParkBridge.htm

What does MoDOT think? Click link above. The bridge could collapse under its own weight in two or three years. It's not even safe for pedestrians(?).

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted January 28, 2010, by Sharon Spear (sweetsexysharon [at] gmail [dot] com)

This article is dated January 17, 2010 and does include photos of the deterioration of the bridge:

http://rwarn17588.wordpress.com/2010/01/17/the-grim-state-of-the-route-66-bridge/

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted January 27, 2010, by Sharon Spear (sweetsexysharon [at] gmail [dot] com)

Here is more information about the situation from Joe Sonderman's website about Route 66.

http://www.66postcards.com/index/tbbr.html

This past December, I went to photograph this bridge when I heard that it had been closed. It's so very sad to see the barricades across the portal to the bridge.

This bridge needs help. What the general public do to help save this bridge from demolition?

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted January 26, 2010, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

It seems association with the "Mother Road" isn't even enough to inspire MoDOT to break out of the box and preserve a historic bridge. I find the 10-20 million dollar estimate to repair the bridge to be suspiciously high, especially if the bridge were restored for pedestrian traffic only. I bet a firm with experience in historic bridge preservation could rehab the bridge for less.

Meramec River US 66 Bridge
Posted January 26, 2010, by Sharon Spear (sweetsexysharon [at] gmail [dot] com)