Rating:
2 votes

Wiley's Bridge

Map 

Facts 

Overview
Through truss bridge over Maiden Creek on Bowers Road (TR 749)
Location
Berks County, Pennsylvania
Status
Open to traffic
Future prospects
Slated for demolition in Fall 2013!
History
Built 1883; rehabilitated 1942
Builder
- Penn Bridge Co. of Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania
Design
Whipple through truss
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 200.1 ft.
Total length: 202.1 ft.
Deck width: 17.4 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 18.0 ft.
Also called
Maiden Creek Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+40.43861, -75.92667   (decimal degrees)
40°26'19" N, 75°55'36" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
18/421407/4476852 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Temple
Inventory numbers
PA 06 7228 0749 9591 (Pennsylvania Bridge Management System number)
PANBI 05423 (Pennsylvania BRKEY bridge number on the 2011 NBI)
BH 30404 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection (as of 10/2009)
Deck condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Superstructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Fair (5 out of 9)
Appraisal: Structurally deficient
Sufficiency rating: 33.2 (out of 100)
Average daily traffic (as of 1986)
462

Update Log 

  • January 22, 2017: Updated by Dana and Kay Klein: Added categories "Othmar H. Ammann Nominee", "Othmar H Ammann Award winner"
  • February 18, 2014: New photos from Patrick S. O'Donnell
  • July 9, 2013: Updated by Nathan Holth: This bridge is now doomed.

Sources 

Comments 

Wiley's Bridge
Posted September 19, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Only time will tell,Tony.I'll let you know if i read or hear anything.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted September 18, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

It's great to hear that things might hopefully be looking up for this beautiful structure, and that there is local interest in saving it in place! Now let's just hope PennDOT gets on board and it comes to fruition!!

Wiley's Bridge
Posted September 18, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

My goofup on the double posting.Duh!

Wiley's Bridge
Posted September 18, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

As per an article printed in the Reading Eagle on 9/18/17 Berks County has sent a letter to PennDOT for a grant to rehabilitate this bridge.When i hear or read more i will post it here.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted September 18, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

As per an article printed in the Reading Eagle on 9/18/17 Berks County has sent a letter to PennDOT for a grant to rehabilitate this bridge.When i hear or read more i will post it here.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted January 24, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Thanks for the link Robert.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted January 23, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)
Wiley's Bridge
Posted January 23, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Pictures?I'm curious because i haven't heard anything about this bridge or read anything in the local newspaper.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted January 22, 2017, by Dana and Kay Klein

Nathan pictures to share?

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 7, 2016, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

As per an article printed in the Reading Eagle on 3-7-16 Berks County officials are applying for a grant to fund a repair of this bridge.Of course no grants are guaranteed being that other counties are also applying for the $1 million in grant money.If the county is successful and the repairs are made,it will be for limited recreational use with the only exception for emergency vehicles.Hopefully this can be accomplished and this bridge can and will be saved.Being that i live within 10 miles of this bridge i can also check up on this bridge.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted May 16, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Actually, there is a lot of discussion about preservation options in Berks County and in Pennsylvania. So keep tuned, another meeting Monday. Site visits are so valuable, that's what Workin' Bridges does, with Nels Raynor, Jim Schiffer, Davis Construction, local contractors and crane operators. We find out real costs so that real decisions can be made.

Lead paint, battery casing containment may lead yet to preservation on site and in-kind. Just do the steps in order. We have the scope for moving and for leaving in place. Nels inspected the bridge in early May, met with locals and spearheaded applicable bids which we have put into a package for delivery on Monday.

Better decisions through good information. Here are a few of the photos that Nels took.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted May 16, 2014, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

got some bad news on this bridge.according to the reading eagle newspaper,either preservationists come up with enough money to disassemble this bridge and transport it to Alabama where it will be reassembled as part of a trail or it will be torn down.the clock is ticking.will let you know if I hear anything in the future.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 22, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)
Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 22, 2014, by James McCray (jamesinslocomb [at] yahoo [dot] com)

For all of those talking about moving bridges.........let us remember London Bridge. It was not only moved across county lines, and not only moved across state lines, but was moved internationally across an ocean and across many states to be in NV.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 22, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

First,

Can someone transfer James' comment to this bridge - its not affiliated at the moment.

James,

Just a note, the 1830 date was a bit tongue-in-cheek in reference to the news report I linked to. There are no iron bridges in the US that are that old. Wiley's Bridge is from 1883.

Sorry for the confusion.

Art S.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 22, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Tony,

You know me. You know that if there were a chance to leave it where it is, we would help with that. It was the first thing I said to these people. But we were there to discuss moving it, rather than seeing it scrapped. The proposal for removal will not include scrappers, it will include preservation.

What we can do with this bridge is really shine a light on what we do from the non-profit people sector. We don't have much money but we do have heart and I think I have learned from the best what the preferred options are. So, given that, please trust me when I say we are doing good things for bridges. Good things for raising public awareness and good things for giving people help with knowledge for pricing and what can be done by going through our group.

After four years, we are starting to make real headway. This Whipple Truss may be the best thing for bridge preservation ever. And Penn Dot wants to do better. They said finally we are the group that can fill the niche between a dream and reality for costs and scope of work. They are excited that they can save a few bridges, and we do follow the preservation covenants for access and good practices.

AND, on another note. we heard from FWHA about B.B. Comer and we have the go ahead to start because we have met all the criteria for ownership. Now I never thought I'b be living in Alabama for any length of time, but a bridge troll goes where the bridges are. Next week Minnesopta with the Workin' Bridges team of Nels and Jim Schiffer P.E. We've added a Minnesota contractor, Mike Healy, and we are workin' it.

So if anyone wants to talk with me directly here is the number again. 641.260.1262

jb

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 21, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Tony,

Many, if not most of these bridges crossed state lines to arrive from their places of manufacture. Once they are moved from their original, historic, environment it doesn't matter how far (in my opinion, of course).

Regards,

Art S.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 21, 2014, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Well, I must say that I really despise historic bridges crossing state lines under any circumstance EXCEPT demolition. And while I have much admiration for Julie's group and their desire to save these landmarks, if a local group were to step up and make a push to keep it I would be all for it staying put.

I think we would all agree that in a perfect world EVERY state would want to save the best examples of their transportation heritage and take pride in them...

Too bad we don't live in a perfect world, huh?

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 21, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This NSRGA/Workin' Bridges press release was put up on the B.B. Comer Bridge Page. Penn Dot offered us this bridge as the county does not want it. And we do. We think it is a win for Historic Truss Bridge Restoration and it keeps the story going and it will look great where we need it so that the public can continue to use it. And I think it will be free to Berks County residents visiting Alabama.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted March 20, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

I have a guess as to who is behind this:

http://www.wfmz.com/news/news-regional-berks/Historic-bridge...

I like that the bridge now dates to 1830 according to the newscast...

I hope this action either causes the locals to save it or it is successfully shipped to AL - actually moving it and re-erecting it in AL would make for a great story.

Regards,

Art S.

Wiley's Bridge
Posted February 17, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Found another article:

http://www.wfmz.com/news/news-regional-berks/efforts-underwa...

By the way, can someone pull the content, including pictures and videos across so they are here permanently? Very often, the links die after a while.

Maiden Creek Bridge
Posted July 17, 2013, by Art S. (Asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Article regarding the bridge with pictures:

http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=493018

Maiden Creek Bridge
Posted July 9, 2013, by John Marvig (johnmarvig [at] chaska [dot] net)

Waste of tax payer money to take it down without any logical reason. That same money could go towards preserving the bridge.

Maiden Creek Bridge
Posted July 9, 2013, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Whipple trusses never disappoint, but this one is a really nice example!

Maiden Creek Bridge
Posted July 9, 2013, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

How typical. Here we have an exceedingly rare pin-connected wrought iron Whipple truss. The county plans to demolish it for absolutely no reason (no replacement planned). The bridge could easily be left standing for pedestrians. The bridge design is more rare than any of the several wooden covered bridges in the county. Yet, once again, every single covered bridge in the county is preserved and has a fresh coat of paint on it, while this metal truss bridge (whose design is more rare in Pennsylvania than the designs of the covered bridges) is sentenced to the dumpster.