Rating:
11 votes

Calhoun Street Bridge

Photos 

Oblique View

Photo taken by C.N. Plummer, Lincoln Highway Association

BH Photo #115791

Map 

Videos 

11-15-2019 Calhoun St. Bridge crossing

NJ to PA crossing. The video didn't play great for me but it gives a better sense of scale of crossing this quarter mile + long 1884 Phoenix Column bridge. I think most of the rattles are in the car, caused by the expanded metal deck. A lot of people bust on PA & NJ, but this one is a win!

The Philly Buff

Play video on YouTube

Play video on YouTube

Facts 

Overview
Through truss bridge over Delaware River on Calhoun Street/Trenton Avenue
Location
Morrisville, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and Mercer County, New Jersey
Status
Open to traffic
History
Built 1884 by the Phoenix Bridge Co.; rehabilitated 2010
Builders
- Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission
- Phoenix Bridge Co. of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
Railroads
- Interurban
- New Jersey-Pennsylvania Traction Co. (NJP)
- Newtown, Langhorne & Bristol Street Railway Co. (NL&B)
- Streetcar
Design
Iron, pin-connected, Pratt through truss
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 180.1 ft.
Total length: 1,277.0 ft.
Deck width: 18.4 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 15.0 ft.
Recognition
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on November 20, 1975
Also called
Calhoun Street Toll-Supported Bridge (Official name)
Approximate latitude, longitude
+40.21969, -74.77833   (decimal degrees)
40°13'11" N, 74°46'42" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
18/518860/4452164 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Trenton West
Average daily traffic (as of 1992)
21,397
Inventory numbers
PA 09 7409 9991 0025 (Pennsylvania Bridge Management System number)
NRHP 75001621 (National Register of Historic Places reference number)
BH 30503 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of April 2008)
Overall condition: Poor
Superstructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 5 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • June 3, 2020: New photo from Patrick Gurwell
  • May 10, 2020: New photo from Art Suckewer
  • April 14, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Fix map marker
  • November 17, 2019: New video from Art Suckewer
  • November 29, 2018: New photo from Abby Janick
  • November 16, 2018: New photo from Art Suckewer
  • November 2, 2018: New photo from Art Suckewer
  • August 19, 2017: New Street View added by Dana and Kay Klein
  • March 2, 2014: Photo imported by Dave King
  • February 25, 2014: Updated by Luke Harden: Added categories "Pennsylvania & New Jersey Traction Co.", "Interurban"
  • July 3, 2013: Photo imported by Dave King
  • September 24, 2010: Updated by Ian Anderson: Bridge has been restored and reopened
  • September 6, 2010: Updated by Ian Anderson: Bridge closed for rehabilitation
  • June 3, 2010: New Street View added by Matthew Lohry
  • July 9, 2009: Updated by Ian Anderson: Added Rail-to-road category, fixed rehabilitation date
  • March 29, 2009: Updated by Ian Anderson: Added future prospects,. removed Route 32
  • February 22, 2009: Updated by Ian Anderson
  • August 20, 2008: New photos from J.R. Manning
  • June 22, 2008: Updated by J.R. Manning: Added to Lincoln Highway category

Sources 

Comments 

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 11, 2020, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Art,

I have a personal contact at this agency and he told me that the guards at this particular bridge (more than any of their other bridges) are "overzealous" is I think the word he used. So I guess I am not the first person to have troubles at this bridge. But you are correct their primary duty is to monitor for weight limit violations, so in general they do a great service to protecting these historic bridges. I have never had any problems at any of their other bridges.

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 10, 2020, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Meh,

I think Nathan just ran into a moron. The main function of the ‘guards’ is keep overweight vehicles off. An important job for a very high traffic (10K + vehicles per day),1000’+ long, Phoenix Column, wrought iron bridge from 1884!

I’m glad that someone is paid to keep an eye on it. The fact that Nathan got harassed is a bonus! A proper New Jersey welcome!

Regards,

Art S.

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 10, 2020, by George A Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Thanks Nathan for clearing that question up about the cameras.As for security I agree that it is needed in this day and age being that 9-1-1 opened up everybodys eyes to what can happen anywhere including this bridge.Also it is a great idea to clear picture taking with the security on either side of the bridge.Would it hurt to mention Bridgehunter the website as a site for the pictures that are taken?

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 10, 2020, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

George asked about the cameras on the bridge. The bridge is owned by the Delaware Joint Toll Bridge Commission so its their security officials who monitor the bridge. Also, the security guards at this bridge are a little more intense than at other bridges owned by the DJTBC. I was confronted by the security and had to get them to contact a friend of mine at the DJTBC before they would even let me take photos on the bridge sidewalk... to me restricting photography doesn't seem legal as the agency is a public governmental agency and the sidewalk is public, but in either case, they can't stop you from taking photos beside the bridge. But if you want to take photos on the sidewalk and not have a huge argument on the bridge with the security people, you may want to contact the DJTBC in advance of your visit to make arrangements.

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted February 8, 2019, by George Oakley (Georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com )

I noticed security cameras on the bridge.Who watches the cameras,Pa or N.J.?

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted February 8, 2019, by Anonymous

The street (and bridge) were named after Alexander Calhoun.

From trentonhistory.org: "Calhoun Street is the outgrowth of Calhoun Lane, where Alexander Calhoun lived and kept a general merchandise store, about at its junction with Pennington Avenue. The lane led from this point, crossing what used to be the river road near where the present feeder runs, and ended at Beatty's Ferry on the river. It was an important artery of traffic in the early days and today it forms one of the two principal outlets of the city to Pennsylvania."

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted August 17, 2017, by Anonymous

The street was named for Calhoun. I'm not sure who the bridge was named for.

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted August 17, 2017, by Eric Maywar (emaywar [at] trentonnj [dot] org)

For whom was the Calhoun Street Bridge named?

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted July 22, 2015, by Bob Waterhouse (bobwaterh [at] aol [dot] com)

Nathan, thanks for the suggestion. I've contacted them, and will post any answers they provide

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted June 24, 2015, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Bob, The bridge owner The Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission would be the most likely source of this information.

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted June 24, 2015, by Bob Waterhouse (bobwaterh [at] aol [dot] com)

I just examined the two end posts on the middle truss, southern (PA) side, and both are as Ian Anderson described them in 2009. The original Phoenix columns are reinforced with long flat steel plates bolted above and below them -- these plates were preserved when the bridge was renovated in 2010. (I think the other "fixes" he described on the old bridge were made unnecessary during the renovation, but these reinforcements clearly had to be kept.)

Still interested to know why the reinforcement was necessary and when it was done, but I have no idea how to research this. Anyone?

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 24, 2015, by Bob Waterhouse (bobwaterh [at] aol [dot] com)

Thanks for the response, Nathan. Yes, those are the truss end posts I was referring to. This pair differs from the other 13, which are the more elaborate, and graceful, Phoenix columns. However, the upper and mid-height bracings that connect them transversely are identical to those joining the other end post pairs, as are the decorative finials above them. There must be a story behind this, some irregularity that made it necessary either when the bridge was built 1882, or when it was repaired around 1950 (I believe)or even during the 2010 rehabilitation. Are there engineering records that would provide an explanation?

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 18, 2015, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Bob,

Are you referring to this detail:

https://goo.gl/maps/PO5Jk

It appears to be either a (perhaps old) alteration of original end posts, or replacement of original end posts. I (embarrassed to say) have not field visited this bridge, and so am just going off of Google Street View.

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 16, 2015, by Bob Waterhouse (bobwaterh [at] aol [dot] com)

This is an amazingly graceful truss bridge, lightweight girders and ornate details. Does anyone know why the southern end posts on the third or fourth truss seem to be of a heavier material?. This feature was preserved even after the rehabilitation about five years ago – was it a quirky part of the original design, or was it made necessary by some unusual occurrence?

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted November 1, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Nice picture in article on Lincoln Highway signs:

http://www.buckscountycouriertimes.com/news/communities/fall...

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted March 23, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Found this image. Note the ice. I don't recall the piers being painted though:

http://lovesphotoalbum.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Calhou...

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted February 7, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Interesting article. Note the piers are from a prior bridge and date to 1861. Also, the piers from the Trenton Makes bridge are 207 years old!

http://www.centraljersey.com/articles/2014/02/07/hopewell_va...

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted December 25, 2013, by ArtS (Asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

More info on the bridge as well as pictures:

http://lincolnhighwaynews.wordpress.com/tag/trenton-nj/

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted May 12, 2009, by Ian Anderson (macsignals [at] gmail [dot] com)

I went across this bridge last weekend, and with the normal traffic that jams up across it I was able to see what's been done to the bridge in the past. Some of the eyebar diagonals have been cut and spliced with bolted plates, counter-diagonal rods have been replaced with steel cable, steel cable has also been used to reinforce the tension diagonals in some places. (Presumably the bottom chord as well, but I couldn't tell from the car.) Finally, at least one of the phoenix columns has been partially covered with a piece of bolted box-steel.

The DRJTBC is supposed to start rehabilitating this bridge late this year, so other modifications are bound to happen then. Oh well, still a beautiful truss bridge!

Calhoun Street Bridge
Posted August 20, 2008, by Ian A. (iang2 [at] comcast [dot] net)

This bridge should be in another category as well, Wrought Iron. Here's the DRJTBC's page on it:

http://www.drjtbc.com/default.aspx?pageid=78