Bridgeport Bridge over the Ohio River- Controlled Demolition, Inc.
Video by Controlled Demolition Inc., linked by Alexander D. Mitchell IV
Yes Ben, the finials and some important salvageable pieces of the bridge will be salvaged and given to the local museum and other groups interested in keeping a piece of now lost history. At least they will not throw the whole bridge away, which is a plus for many.
Oh. It was in Jim Grey's link posted below. :)
I read somewhere that the plan was to take the unique features off and save them for a museum or something.
What a terrible waste. I would have thought they would at least save the ornaments on top....
thanks Nathan. Figured we have a barf bag, A toilet, So I figured throw in a epic fail here in there for the real stupid parties of people who refuse to save bridges.
The bridge did have severe deterioration in several places, but we could have restored the trusses here in Michigan. The worst deterioration was in the floorbeams, and those often get replaced anyway in many rehabs. Pad weld the bottom chord eyebars, fabricate new floorbeams, etc, its all feasible and even cost-effective.
J.P.: I liked your little graphics!
I am so glad now that when I visited this bridge in May, I walked out on the pedestrian deck and took some pictures.
I'm no civil engineer but this bridge looked to be badly neglected to me, and I wondered whether it was even possible to restore that bridge anymore.
Pics from the demolition
Article about the demolition.
I can't believe they're going to destroy this beautiful historic bridge.
WTOV-TV in Steubenville is reporting that this bridge will be demolished in July, 2011.
If you care about the Bridgeport Bridge, please contact anyone you can in the City of Wheeling and ask them to take ownership of the bridge and preserve it. WVDOH told me that they offered the bridge to the city for them to convert to pedestrian use and they refused. The city wrongly seems to think that the suspension bridge is the only bridge worth caring about.
As to your other comment, the bridge you have pictured is a bowstring built by Massillon Bridge Company, using their unique patented design. I offer a detailed writeup here: http://www.historicbridges.org/iowa/centralpark/index.php
The bridge possibly built from a ferris wheel that you are thinking of in Indiana is undoubtedly the Dunns Bridge: http://www.bridgehunter.com/in/jasper/dunns/
Please dont tear down 160yr old bridge...so much history will be lost. needs to be restored so foot traffic can cross. maybe rebuild it somewhere else??? I would pay money to walk on it...we lost this bridge in our hometown of martinsville, IN due to a dump truck with a full load... the iron in this bridge used too be part of a famous ferris wheel???
This bridge is still standing. Sounded like some people were uncertain about that. There is some interest in saving the bridge for pedestrian use, however a major barrier is that the community citizens (Wheeling residents) do not think the bridge is anything special. Seems a rather sheltered life for people to live that they would think a European style bridge in the USA is not unusual or noteworthy.
And yes, the decorative finials will be salvaged as part of demolition. The amended Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for this bridge which allows for demolition to take place stipulates that mitigation for the adverse affect of demolition will include the salvage of "architectural elements of the old Bridgeport Bridge for curation or reuse to the Wheeling National Heritage Area Corporation or its designee. As requested, the finials atop the bridge columns will be donated for reuse in the Wheeling Waterfront Park." They are to be removed in a way that will minimize damage.
Another often overlooked consequence of the demolition of this bridge is that a large quantity of valuable wrought iron will be destroyed as part of the demolition of this bridge. After conversing with many people at Michigan's 3 day historic bridge workshop, there is a growing concern at the destruction of wrought iron, since the material is becoming rare (with extremely rare and overseas exception, it is no longer made) and has the potential to be salvaged and reused for bridge preservation work and research elsewhere. If I had been a consulting party for Section 106 on this bridge, I would have requested additional mitigation that included WVDOT salvage and store some of the wrought iron on this bridge for free reuse by researchers, craftsmen, and contractors in historic bridge preservation related work.
What a loss. Such beautiful and ornate metal work. I hope that some of it was salvaged if the bridge was lost. I wish history could be appreciated and not destroyed in favour of concrete abominations. Has it indeed been demolished? Thank you for at least preserving it's memory with the wonderful photos.
It is a sad shame this ornate old truss couldn't be turned into a pedestrian crossing. I like its endposts with latticework, and decorative metal, finials, etc. Yes, the bridge will be history in a few weeks in favor of the UCEB planted next to it. When Wheeling does get rid of it, a goodhearted idea should be to preserve some of the ornate metalwork in some sort of a "memorial". Just an idea from a dedicated bridge lover like me.
GPS N40 04.35 W080 44.35
The Wheeling bridge also requires that cars stay 50 feet apart. It's in decent shape, give the fact that it is almost 160 years old. You can only cross one lane at a time. Because of the fact that it was the first span ever over 1000 feet, and the fact that it is the first bridge over the Ohio River, it is doubtful that they will get rid of that bridge any time soon. I have ben to the wheeling bridge, it is a great bridge.
The Wheeling Suspension bridge is still very much still in use. It was revamped recently (1999 I think?) with some updated cables and decking. If you visit Wheeling again be sure to give it a cross.
I remember crossing this bridge to visit my aunt and uncle on Wheeling Island. I was amazed by the floor in this bridge. Is the suspension bridge that connected the island with downtown Wheeling still in use?