It is better to save one span than none at all, and I think that is a worthy cause if the bridge is not being left in place. However, this bridge was unique and stood out among bridges in the region since it was one of the longest simple span pin-connected truss bridges in existence. A single span preservation will not have this distinction. Moreover, complete demolition was not needed.
"Hey, I have an idea! Let's tear down the rest of an incredibly historic bridge that only had a couple out of its many spans destroyed by a tornado for 'safety reasons'! We've been looking for an excuse to tear down the eyesore for decades anyway!"
I just don't get it. At least one span might be getting preserved. Farewell to an historic icon in Oklahoma railroading.
Well Nathan, if there is one consolation, the southernmost span will be kept and given to the City of Newcastle, according to their facebook webiste. It's more of a question of what to do with that remaining span....
Thanks for clarifying the status of this bridge. I will consider this one of the top ten greatest offenses against historic bridges that I have witnessed since I began in 2003. And that is quite an achievement for Oklahoma. It is obscene. Didn't the tornado destroy enough of Oklahoma?! Now we have some idiots destroying something that the tornado spared. Whoever would authorize the destruction of this bridge is without a soul. It should have been left standing like the Kinzua Viaduct in Pennsylvania.
Whole thing is coming down. Jason posted a photo earlier that showed about 3/4 of it gone already.
News article from the Oklahoman
It's a damn shame if they're tearing the rest of it down rather than leaving what's left - there is no reason to demolish the rest of a beautiful bridge like that.
Er, make that near the north end.
It is still there-only 2 spans near the middle were destroyed by the tornado.
Shot these photos on May 8, 2013. River has obviously moved while the bridge was there, as 1/3 of the bridge is now over dry land and looks completely out of place. Locals told me the bridge was closed after a flood many years ago when the new Hwy 81 bridge was built. Much erosion along the banks.
I visited this bridge while in town on business May 9 and shot these photos; who knew it'd be gone 2 weeks later...
National Weather Service has an interesting Google Earth file showing the track of the tornado with site observations. http://www.srh.noaa.gov/images/oun/wxevents/20130520/20130520-storm_survey_path_points.kmz
Oddly, they do not appear to have surveyed the bridge damage, and I think the track of the tornado could be a little off in that area as a result. However, based on the map, I am guessing the spans that fell could have been subjected to EF2 forces, while the rest of the spans might have been experiencing winds as great as EF1.
I also thought that it looked like the winds really threw the truss spans into the modern bridge... with enough force that the bottom chord dragged along the ground, tearing up the grass. That is visible in some of the aerial photos.
Something else I got to thinking about today, is that it looks like in a few images i've seen that the old bridge was essentially thrown against the new bridge. Makes me wonder if the new bridge wasn't there, if the old one would have literally been picked up and tossed around in the tornado. It was shown to displace huge items and that last thing you need is a bridge span swirling around.....
I may take a trip out this weekend Nathan. I'm trying to avoid being a lookie-loo with the damage from this, especially since i'm a meteorologist, but I could get away with taking photos of the bridge and leaving it at that.
Zach, I would encourage you to still go photograph the bridge if you can. 80% of the bridge is still standing. There is a risk that Oklahoma will take advantage of the disaster declaration and use it as an excuse to demolish all 10 spans even though it appears only two spans were blown off.
I live in Norman and kept telling myself this last year on lazy weekends I needed to go take photos of this bridge, now i'm kicking myself for not doing it....
I just seen the pictures on here, looks like only a one span is completely gone while the 2nd is twisted.
I too wouldn't be so quick as to call it destroyed or lost. Looks repairable to me.
Just seen a status on google+ saying the bridge is gone.
I had a bad feeling when I saw the NWS preliminary path. However, I would not describe the whole bridge as lost/collapsed. Looks like at least half the bridge is still standing. That has kept the Kinzua Viaduct in PA alive in some format, and also the Walnut Street Bridge in Harrisburg. Also, if FEMA money is applied to cleanup this disaster as it undoubtedly will, I believe Section 106 will apply.
Photos from Facebook (uploaded here) show at least one truss span knocked off piers.
PRELIMINARY path of the Tornado that went through this area today places this bridge in the vicinity of the Tornado's path. Hopefully it survived, but honestly with so many destructive tornadoes in Oklahoma I am surprised as many bridges have stood as long as they have.
As of 4/17/2013 the new bridge is built and in place some 150+ yards east of this bridge. This bridge is still standing and somebody (likely a local farmer) has torched the barricades off and it is being used to move farm equipment between pastures.
i don't know if it helps you to approximately date it or make-it, but the name "Jones and Laughlin" appears on the heavier bracing, and the stylized "illinois" stamp on the lighter-duty bracing. Thought it possible Some of you guys with a lot of bridge hunting/researching experience might be able to discern something from that.
Couldn't get any decent pictures, was a cold, rainy,dark day when I was out there.
The bridge was at about 138th and Sheridan Rd. at the bottom of a steep hill. They rerouted the road and posey creek when they built Kimberley Clark. Me and my buddies road bicycles across it long before they ever built Sandusky Ave. Which was built for Semi's and Delivery trucks for Kimberley Clark. I lived across 151st St. north of the Cemetery about a 1/4 mi. west of Sheridan Rd. from 1957 until the state widened the highway.
Haven't been able to go and field-check it, but satelite view on google earth seems to indicate she's long gone. Appears to be a long, white UCEB where it once stood.
Additional, Dec 2012 color photos of this bridge can be viewed at:
Full resolution images may take a while to load, depending on your connection speed.
Is the 2nd photo of the bridge on dry land?
There are some historians that are saying that this was the location of the Beale Road Iron bridge over the Sans Bois. Circa 1860. This is incorrect. The Beale Road Iron Bridge (one of 6 erected in Eastern Oklahoma in 1859-1860, was located much closer (about 8 miles further east on the Sans Bois) to the town of Iron Bridge, Oklahoma. The true site of the Beale bridge is now inundated due to the formation of a lake, and is not really visible.
Obviously the bridge depicted in my photographs is circa 1910, and has the construction techniques correct for that period, including the lally column supports. I don't think anyone could say that this is an 1860 Iron bridge, by any stretch.
As of Dec. 2012, Google Maps satellite imagery shows that this bridge has been replaced and demolished.
As of Dec. 2012, Google Maps satellite imagery shows that this bridge has been replaced and demolished.
I like when bridges are painted. They stand out in their surroundings nicely.
This old rock bridge was (finally!) replaced by a new modern bridge - opening to the public in November 2012. The old arched bridge was left in place but closed to vehicular traffic. The new bridge is dedicated to the families on whose property it was built: Sylvester Smith and George "Buddy" Henderson - my grandfather, and at 95, the oldest living resident of Jumbo OK.
I hate to think what they spent on that new slab to carry a meager 160 cars a day... I'm sure the truss bridge could have been rehabbed for a lot less.
The future status of this bridge is unclear. It has been on ODOT's adopt-a-bridge bridge re-use page for the last year.
this bridge my be gone soon..the new road and bridge is nearly finished and I hear this one will be torn down?.anyone know any more about this?
Whilst it may not be notable, or a rarity, by its age it is historic.
Just because there are 2353245 Coca-Cola adverts lying about across the globe, doesn't negate one from the 1950s being a historic piece.
Ergo, the point I was trying to make, which is that by its age, it IS historic, still stands.
However, it is not a Chevy. It is simply a 54 year old interstate era Ugly Eyesore Steel Bridge (UESB). Nothing historically exciting about this one, just a simple freeway overpass like mentioned before. We have thousands just like it around the country.
> Built 1958
If it was a Chevy from the same era, you'd be calling it a historic/vintage car.
This bridge isn't really historic. It's not that old, and it's not interesting in any way. Just a freeway overpass that is falling apart.
Great job. I am quite sure this is the bridge my mother traveled on as child in a covered wagon. Love the photos. Thanks
i lived here all my 35 years an its been a great place to swing from,jump from an the biggest catfish come from under the 20 foot hole under the bridge...if it was a safety move good deal if it wasnt ,atleast leave our land marks alone up here in gods country....god bless the world....for the end will be here soon...
There is construction activity suggesting that replacement of this bridge is underway.
The causeway on the west end is being widened, with the new fill being added on the south side of the causeway.
It appears the plan is to make the causeway 4 lanes, build a new 2 lane bridge on the south side of the existing bridge and then after the new bridge is finished traffic would go over the new bridge and the old one would be replaced, making the finished project a 4 lane causeway and bridge. There isn't (yet) any evidence of widening Highway 51 on either end of the project.
I will try and get a picture or two of the new causeway construction and post it later.
There's another person who posts bridges that are not historical, old, or cool. I occasionally will post a concrete bridge, but only if there is something interesting about it like the 1st Avenue bridge and the 8th Street bridge in Minot, ND, which are now footbridges. But I usually stick to trusses, arches, and other interesting bridges, or boring bridges like the I-40 Arkansas River bridge that have some historical significance.
A crossing has always existed. Whether or not it is this bridge or not is the question.
It is the truth. Concrete just doesn't cut it.
Glad they left it intact with the deck. It looks like an entirely different area than a few years back. They saved 10s if not hundreds of thousands and preserved history in place. Good Job!
Old bridge is still there. Road removed, bridge blocked.
I wouldn't lose heart or hope just yet--new Google Earth imagery dated 3/24/2012 shows the new bridge completed, with the old still completely intact (including the deck) about 60 feet to the north of the new bridge.
My Delorme Mapping shows it as Lee Creek.
I have not been up there since the replacement. I expect they removed the old completely. Maybe I sadly will go up and shoot a few photos and add an update.
This bridge near Shady Point has since been closed, though the locals still try to use it. I am attaching a couple of photos of the bridge as of a few months ago.
I think the map location and county are wrong for this bridge. Bokchito Creek and road E2060 should be here: 34.026086,-95.646469
I really need to go back and photograph this bridge in the winter time where the trees don't block the view so much. If you go visit this bridge, be careful driving through Tryon, as it is a major speed trap. My buddy got a ticket there.
I don't think Norman really has a park big enough for a span this large, it would have to be a park on the outer edge of town or something because none of the inner-city parks are big enough. Heck i'd love to see it on the University Campus. Right now there's a small suspension pedestrian bridge near the Duck Pond, but there's more than enough width there to place the bridge over the north side of the pond area. Problem is the rehab costs of getting the bridge demolished, moved and then the deck fixed would probably be way more than the University wants to spend on something that really isn't needed.
Considering the history of this bridge and where it came from, at the very least it should be moved to a park somewhere...perhaps in Norman?
Not to mention it looks like it has been closed for about 20 years or more...
Took a few shots of the bridge today. Local hooligans have burnt a rather large hole in the bridge and the Deck is definitely in bad condition. Overall structure looks OK though. Sad they're not considering fixing this old beauty up. I wish I had some land so I could take it off their hands :(
Heard real good rumor that this bridge has it's days numbered. They may do a low bridge next to it on the south side to divert traffic while they tear down and rebuild this one in the upcoming year or two.
Yes, I was posting on several bridges when i did that last one about this one being gone and messed up.. However... these two twin bridges are Now really gone, They are being rebuilt at this moment. Highway 77 is closed off at Oswalt road and have to go over to I-35 up to Exit 24 to get back on 77. They are replacing both bridges at once.
Bridge was officially reopened October 11 2011.
I came across this bridge on a quarter received in change from buying a postcard. It was not here already so I added it and updated some other listings for Murray County.
Nathan, you are attempting to use common sense, logic, in Oklahoma, something the DOT hasn't learned about because the bonds for it haven't been approved.
Yes it would be cheaper/more responsible use of funds to actually do minor repairs to these structures when the repaired structure would be adequate. But ODOT has chosen instead to let everything rot so they can continue screaming shriller and shriller about needing more money.
Even basic preventive maintenance that would save millions of dollars from having to do wholesale replacement of bridges is shrugged off because they wouldn't then be able to justify the fit they throw and the drama they produce for more money.
And when I say drama, believe me. They are milking the "Oklahoma has the nation's most unsafe bridges" story for all its worth. And the reality is, most of these aren't even trusses, but they seem to get hit hardest.
Looks like this bridge has been repainted recently. Its a beautiful bridge. I love the old style fence type railings.
I believe that this bridge has been relocated. I think this bridge is the original Route 66 bridge (http://bridgehunter.com/ok/oklahoma/bh42978/) and was just moved to make the driveway entrance for Jake's Garage. If one looks at the Flicker link for http://bridgehunter.com/ok/oklahoma/bh42978/ one can see that the bridge has been listed as "lost" on this site but a flicker link pic shows that the abutments remain with the advertizement for Jake's Garage. Anyway, any help will be welcome to confirm my theory.
Need confirmation about this bridge: From Google Earth it looks like a pony truss, but it is fuzzy at best. There is a pony truss just to the west down the street from this bridge that is listed and is a pony truss. So help is needed.
Yup...Looks like it to me as well.
From the looks of Google Earth this bridge seems be bypassed, but preserved for pedestrians. Confirmation is needed.
Mr. Holth's comment made me wonder how much it would cost to replace all politicians. I guess a lot, as long as corporations are allowed to contribute uncapped amounts to campaign funds. But really, spread the same money over many bridges and how many could be retained and how many employed and the work spread over a larger area. Just my thinking. It is political so pull it if you like. Replace it with one word. Maintenance.
Define "Stupid Waste of Tax Dollars."
This bridge has an NBI superstructure rating of Fair and substructure rating of Satisfactory. The only reason it is closed is because of its Critical wooden deck rating. The bridge has an ADT of 100, 1/4 of the maximum ADT for a Low Volume Roadway designation. Regardless, the bridge is to be demolished and replaced with a two lane bridge. So once a month when the stars line up and two cars meet each other on the bridge they won't have to wait five seconds for one of the cars to cross. The project is described as a "...well over a million dollar project" I find myself wondering how much it would cost to replace the existing timber deck and make minor repairs to the truss. Would the cost even reach $500,000?
Judging by the span in the photo for that article and zooming around with street view ... the centre span was saved. The 1950s twin can be observed still in the background.
This bridge has been removed now, but one of the spans was saved by a nearby business who has placed it on the ground as an exhibit. http://www.newson6.com/story/15677414/catoosa-business-saves-a-big-piece-of-route-66-history
Not according to the contractors on the job that I spoke with when I shot the photos. It will be removed.
maybe since the road is being rerouted maybe they will leave the bridge intact as a relic....A man can hope.
That is a rather disturbing creek name.
Here's another photo:
I see each span has 2 fairly new street lights on it. I'd like to see a picture of it at night.
I think if it was connected to land it could be used as a fishing pier, and if you removed one mere span that could solve the "navigation hazard" issue.
Piers look newer than 1905. I agree the bridge was relocated in the 1930's
Thats correct, it is just sitting in the middle, it was never completed and never connected to shore.
I couldn't tell by the picture, but apparently this bridge isn't connected to the other side either. The satellite shows it just sitting in the lake by itself. Bing's Aerial view gives you a pretty good look at it. I'd love to check it out in person some day.
Sorry about my previous comment. Bad day that if I remember, and I sometimes spend hours looking for bridges on here that don't have coordinates, so sometimes its frustrating. so once again I apologize.
I can certainly understand that if a bridge is private (or appears to be) there might be a hesitance to give full disclosure of the location.
Perhaps a solution to this impasse might be that if a person has an interest in visiting a bridge like this that they e-mail the previous photographer in advance. They can inquire about accessibility and ask if they can get more specific directions to the location.
Regards below comment by J.P.
It's not rocket science to find this bridge. If you see in one of my photos, there is a more modern replacement bridge in the background. This bridge appears to be "private" now, giving access to one house. At the time I shot these photos, I did not have GPS, and found it by no more identification than is present in the above listing. After all this is rural Oklahoma, how many roads in Leflore county near Calhoun cross Negro Creek? I hesitate to give precise data to bridges that appear to be private.
If this is west of Wister, the trackage is not abandoned. It is part of the Arkansas-Oklahoma RR.
In regards the first comment. At the time I photographed this bridge, I did not have GPS and I actually did not know the road we were on, as I wasn't driving. However I am (in any case) reluctant to post locations of bridges on private property, as this could be a nuisance to the property owners. I did ask, and got permission to photograph this.
Sawyer Ok has always been special to me.Daddy lived in Sawyer from 1913 -1921.He moved back to SC in 1922.
He had pictures of the bridge over the Kiamichi both railroad and another bridge. He and cousin ran a merchant boat on the Kiamichi and also a sawmill boat.He had pictures of both boats.
I have been trying to find out something about when the bridges were built but have been unable untill I found this on internet I wonder if the foundations of the bridges are of the pictures he made ? I am very interested to find out about the pictures he has
This bridge is to be closed to vehicular traffic but left for pedestrians. By the way, both Google Maps and the news article name the road as "Rangeline Road" but this bridgehunter page lists the road as Kickapoo Road. Is that therefore an error that we should correct?
It is the exact same as the one two posts below this one.
This appears to be the same bridge as you show two spots below.
I can say with with certainty this bridge is not on the Union Pacific. It was originally the frisco line and is now owned by Kansas city Southern, who still operates on this line to Fort Smith. This bridge is on the exact same line that Jenson Tunnel is on. This bridge being on the outskirts of Poteau, Jenson Tunnel at rock island/pocola through backbone mountain.
The date on the tunnel itself is 1886. I've walked to it myself and seen it with my own eyes.
Google satellite view shows the new bridge being built. The truss is gone.
This is no longer. Replaced with a Charming Concrete Slab a year or two ago.
This is no longer. Replaced with a Charming Concrete Slab a year or two ago.
This is reported to be the last bridge of this style along old US 66 in Oklahoma that has a pedestrian walkway.
Bridge still exists yet has suffered a fair amount of damage over the years. The deck seems to recieve regular maintenance (pine planks still have heavy, like-new, creasote odor) and the local telephone company still uses the bridge to support its cable running over the creek.
This location lies within a recently constructed wind farm. The bridge, obviously not able to withstand the large transport vehicles required for construction, has been replaced. Bridge no longer exists.