Rating:
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NY5S Schoharie Creek Bridge

Photos 

schoharie-rr-bridge | by Russ Nelson

Photo by Russ Nelson

License: Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike (CC BY-SA)

View this photo on Flickr

BH Photo #331388

Map 

Street View 

Description 

Originally built as a 2 track railroad bridge on the New York, West Shore & Buffalo Railroad, this bridge and its associated segment of line was abandoned when the New York Central Railroad acquired the NYWS&B in 1981, as the NYC already had a line north of this location.

In 1987 the nearby Interstate 90 (New York Thruway) bridge collapsed during a flood when excessive scouring undermined a central pier, killing 10 people. To continue traffic the interstate was rerouted over the current Route 5S bridge, and Route 5S was moved over the railroad bridge which had received a rehabilitation to convert it to roadway use. In December of that year the new interstate bridge was completed.

After route 5S traffic returned to its original bridge, the bridge became part of the canal way trail, a rail trail following the old NYWS&B rail bed.

The original highway bridge, already weak, was further damaged by Hurricane Irene in 2011, which this bridge endured undamaged. The highway bridge was subsequently converted to carry the Canalway Trail and this bridge has been converted to permanently carry Route 5S, the two adjacent bridges swapping roles in 2015.

Facts 

Overview
Baltimore through truss bridge over Schoharie Creek on NY 5S
Location
Montgomery County, New York
Status
Open to highway traffic; RR line abandoned
History
Built 1910 by Fort Pitt Bridge works; Abandoned 1981; Converted for emergency Highway use 1987; Converted to pedestrian path 1988; Rehabilitated for permanent highway use 2015
Builder
- Fort Pitt Bridge Works of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Railroads
- Conrail (CR)
- New York Central Railroad (NYC)
- New York, West Shore & Buffalo Railroad (NYWS&B)
- Rail-to-road
- Rail-to-trail
- West Shore Railroad (WSH)
Design
2 span Baltimore through truss with 2 span pony plate girder approach spans
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 162.7 ft.
Total length: 498.7 ft.
Deck width: 23.3 ft.
Also called
NYWS&B - Schoharie Creek Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+42.93737, -74.28078   (decimal degrees)
42°56'15" N, 74°16'51" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
18/558682/4754110 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Tribes Hill
Inventory numbers
NY 5523610 (New York State bridge identification number)
BH 62115 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection (as of 11/2015)
Deck condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Superstructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Appraisal: Functionally obsolete
Sufficiency rating: 74.8 (out of 100)
Average daily traffic (as of 2015)
3,842

Update Log 

  • July 7, 2016: Updated by Roger Deschner: Now permanently carries Highway NY 5S; renamed
  • August 11, 2015: Updated by Michael Quiet: Added bridge history & pictures
  • July 6, 2015: Photo imported by Ian Martin
  • July 30, 2014: New Street View added by Ian Martin

Related Bridges 

Sources 

  • Ian Martin
  • Michael Quiet - mquiet [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Roger Deschner - rogerdeschner [at] gmail [dot] com

Comments 

Canalway Trail - Schoharie Creek Bridge
Posted December 2, 2015, by Bill K (pontiac59 [at] twcny [dot] rr [dot] com)

NYC acquired the West Shore in 1881 and it was a secondary route into the mid-1950s. This route from Utica through to Cranesville was abandoned in segments beginning in the 1960s. The last large customer was Beech-Nut in Canajoharie, where ironically a weak bridge on their siding led to this line's abandonment by what was then Conrail. The state spent some money to fix up this line in the late 1970s, which may have included work to this bridge.

After the Thruway bridge collapse, 5S was completely closed and westbound I-90 used this bridge, to allow the Thruway to continue to have four lanes. I rode over it.

More recently it was used again to bypass the 5S bridge through 2012 and 2013, although in 2014 I found the 5S bridge open again albeit made one lane with traffic signals.

Canalway Trail - Schoharie Creek Bridge
Posted October 11, 2015, by Tom (tommyboy6181 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Route 5S has been permanently rerouted onto the railroad bridge, which was rehabilitated. Tropical Storm Irene damaged the existing road bridge even more and caused it to close permanently. It had been down to a single lane due to truss deterioration.

Here's an article about it:

http://www.dailygazette.com/news/2011/sep/22/0922_thruwaylan...

The railroad bridge however is much stronger and held up to the flood without any problems.

Here's the article about the completed project:

http://www.dailygazette.com/news/2012/jan/03/0103_trestle/?p...

Canalway Trail - Schoharie Creek Bridge
Posted August 13, 2015, by Michael Quiet (MQuiet [at] Gmail [dot] com)

Correction on the date made...thank you sir!

It certainly looked like they had rerouted traffic over it recently on the site as well. I wish I had gotten out that way when that was in place...it would have been neat to drive across this bridge.

Canalway Trail - Schoharie Creek Bridge
Posted August 11, 2015, by Ian Martin

Minor correction- this stretch of the West Shore lasted until 1981 when it was cut back from Fort Plain to Cranesville. It also appears from the satellite imagery that it had a recent reprise as a highway bridge while the adjacent Route 5S bridge was being rehabilitated.