Nick Boppel

About Me 

Email: nickboppel01 [at] gmail [dot] com

Hello everyone, I'm Nick. I am a photographer and part time bridgehunter.

I grew up on the Atlantic coast of Florida, but have moved twice - first to Nashville, Tennessee and now currently in Metro Boston, Massachusetts.

One thing that I will note about myself is that I like to try and find whatever interesting details might exist on any bridge, even modern bridges that lack overall aesthetic value. With the exception of the most hideous UCEBs, I've found that even modern plate girder or steel/concrete stringer bridges have some character, especially when viewed from river level or underneath the bridge. As such, I do not limit my photography work to simply historic bridges or truss bridges.

If anyone would like to publicly reuse any of my photo work for noncommercial purposes, please shoot me an email with the photo in question and what you intend to use it for. I do not license under Creative Commons because I want to at least loosely keep track of who is using what. However, if you would like to download any of my photos to your personal device just for your personal private use and not for republishing or redistribution in any public setting (i.e. for use as a wallpaper/desktop background, or for use in any document/presentation that only you will see), you may do that at your own leisure without prior permission. Under no circumstances may any of my photos be reused for commercial purposes.

Recent Updates 

Charlestown Bridge (New) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Network tied arch bridge over Charles River on North Washington Street (Future)
November 15, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Expand with more info
Beals Island Bridge (Washington County, Maine)
Lost deck plate girder bridge over Mossabec Reach on Bridge Street
November 15, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Bridge has been replaced with a UCEB
Eliot Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Brick-faced concrete arch bridge over Charles River on Eliot Bridge in Boston
October 15, 2020: New photos
Anderson Memorial Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Closed-spandrel arch bridge over Charles River on North Harvard Street
October 15, 2020: New photos
John W. Weeks Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Closed-spandrel arch bridge over Charles River on a footpath at Harvard University
October 13, 2020: New photos
Western Avenue Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Closed-spandrel arch bridge over Charles River on Western Avenue
October 13, 2020: New photos
River Street Bridge (1925) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Closed-spandrel arch bridge over Charles River on River Street/Cambridge Street
October 13, 2020: New photos
General Edwards Bridge (Essex County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Saugus River on MA 1A in Lynn
October 12, 2020: New photos
Fore River Bridge (Temporary) (Norfolk County, Massachusetts)
Bailey/Acrow pony truss vertical-lift bridge over Weymouth Fore River on MA 3A (Temporary alignment)
October 12, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Update description per my discovery of the Bailey/Acrow truss sections sitting next to the new bridge
Fore River Bridge (New) (Norfolk County, Massachusetts)
Through truss vertical-lift bridge over Weymouth Fore River on Bridge Street (MA 3A)
October 12, 2020: New photos
Belle Isle Marsh Footbridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Timber stringer bridge over Belle Isle Inlet Marshes on Nature Trail
October 12, 2020: New photos
John Beades Memorial Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Dorchester Bay on Morrissey Boulevard in Boston
October 12, 2020: New photos
Longfellow Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Steel arch bridge over Charles River on Mass. Hwy 3 (Cambridge Street) and MBTA Red Line in Boston and Cambridge
October 1, 2020: New photos
Harvard Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Deck plate girder bridge over Charles River on MA 2A (Massachusetts Avenue)
October 1, 2020: New photos
North Bank Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Modern Pratt pony truss bridge over Millers River Basin on Charles River Esplanade North
October 1, 2020: New photos
Dorchester Avenue Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Concrete stringer bridge over Fort Point Channel/Bass River on Dorchester Avenue (Private section)
October 1, 2020: New photos
Leverett Circle Connector Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Concrete box girder bridge over Charles River on Leverett Circle Connector
October 1, 2020: New photos
Summer Street Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Retractile deck plate girder bridge over Fort Point Channel on Summer Street
October 1, 2020: New photos
Congress Street Bridge (Current) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Fort Point Channel on Congress Street in Boston
October 1, 2020: New photos
Northern Avenue Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Pratt through truss bridge over Fort Point Channel on Northern Avenue
October 1, 2020: New photos
Malden Bridge (Current) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Mystic River on MA 99 (Alford Street) in Boston
September 30, 2020: New photos
Andrew P. McArdle Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Chelsea River on Meridian Street in Boston
September 30, 2020: New photos
Tobin Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Through truss bridge over Mystic River on US 1 in Boston
September 30, 2020: New photos
Granite Avenue Bascule Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Neponset River on Granite Avenue in Boston
September 30, 2020: New photos
Evelyn Moakley Bridge (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Concrete box girder bridge over Fort Point Channel on Seaport Boulevard
September 30, 2020: New photos
Harvest River Bridge (Norfolk County, Massachusetts)
Network arch bridge over Neponset River on Neponset Greenway
September 30, 2020: New photos
Wellington Bridge (Middlesex County, Massachusetts)
Steel stringer (and former bascule) bridge over Mystic River on Fellsway (Massachusetts Route 28)
September 30, 2020: New photos
MBTA Mystic River Bridge (Middlesex County, Massachusetts)
Steel stringer bridge over Mystic River on MBTA Commuter Rail Newburyport/Rockport Line
September 30, 2020: New photos
Dana Bridge (Middlesex County, Massachusetts)
Steel stringer bridge over Mystic River on MBTA Orange Line & Commuter Rail Haverhill Line
September 30, 2020: New photos
Detroit-Windsor Tunnel (Wayne County, Michigan)
Tunnel under Detroit River on US I-375/M-10 & Former Canada 3B in Windsor, Ontario Canada and Detroit
September 7, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Added category "American Roads, LLC"
Charlestown Bridge (New) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Network tied arch bridge over Charles River on North Washington Street (Future)
September 7, 2020: Added
Charlestown Bridge (Temporary) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Bailey pony truss bridge over Charles River on North Washington Street (Temporary Alignment)
September 7, 2020: New photos
Woods Memorial Bridge (Middlesex County, Massachusetts)
Bascule bridge over Malden River on MA 16 in Everett
September 7, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Added categories "Replaced by UCEB", "Former moveable bridge"; Removed category "Navigable waterway"
MBTA - Lechmere Viaduct (Middlesex County, Massachusetts)
Closed-spandrel arch bridge over Charles River, Museum Way, and Charlestown Avenue on MBTA Green Line
September 7, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Bridge is closed for rehabilitation
Charlestown Bridge (1900) (Suffolk County, Massachusetts)
Pratt through truss bridge with former swing span over Charles River on N. Washington Street in Boston
September 7, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Bridge has been demolished
Clark Pond Footbridge (Rockingham County, New Hampshire)
Girder bridge over Clark Pond on Rockingham Recreational Trail
August 28, 2020: New photos
Maple Street Bridge (Windsor County, Vermont)
Deck plate girder bridge over Springfield Dam Spillway on Maple Street
August 27, 2020: New photos
Suncook Connector Bridge (Merrimack County, New Hampshire)
Deck truss bridge over Suncook River and Buck Street on US 3 in Suncook
August 27, 2020: New photos
Hooksett Footbridge (Merrimack County, New Hampshire)
Modern Pratt half-through truss bridge over Merrimack River on Pedestrian Walkway
August 27, 2020: New photos
Hooksett Memorial Bridge (Merrimack County, New Hampshire)
Steel stringer bridge over Merrimack River on Main Street
August 27, 2020: New photos
Lilac Bridge (Merrimack County, New Hampshire)
Lost through truss bridge over Merrimack River in Hooksett
August 26, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: New pedestrian footbridge built at same location, so not "removed without replacement"
Bear River Bay Bridge (Box Elder County, Utah)
Timber stringer bridge over Bear River Bay/Great Salt Lake on Restricted Usage Road
August 25, 2020: Added
UP - Bear River Bay Bridge (Weber County, Utah)
Bridge over Bear River Bay/Great Salt Lake on Union Pacific Railroad & Access Road
August 25, 2020: Added
Antelope Island Causeway (Davis County, Utah)
Causeway over Farmington Bay/Great Salt Lake on Antelope Island Road
August 25, 2020: New photo
NS - Wabash Bridge (Marion County, Missouri)
Vertical-lift through truss bridge over the Mississippi River on the Norfolk Southern Railroad at Hannibal
August 24, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Use official name
Maestri Bridge (Orleans Parish, Louisiana)
Bascule bridge over Lake Pontchartrain on US 11 in New Orleans
August 23, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Project delayed again
Martin Luther King Bridge (St. Louis, Missouri)
Cantilevered through truss over the Mississippi River in downtown St. Louis
August 23, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Bridge reopened as of 8/19/20
Eads Bridge (St. Louis, Missouri)
Three-span steel arch bridge over the Mississippi River and N. Leonor K. Sullivan Blvd. in downtown St. Louis
August 23, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Bridge closed
Little Colorado River Bridge (Coconino County, Arizona)
Lost Warren deck truss bridge over Little Colorado River on US 89
August 22, 2020: Updated by Nick Boppel: Added category "Replaced by UCEB"
California-Arizona Interstate Bridge (Mohave County, Arizona)
Deck plate girder bridge over Colorado River on Interstate 40
August 22, 2020: New photo

Recent Comments 

Basiliere Bridge (Massachusetts)
Posted October 16, 2020

Huh, that's interesting. I don't know why sources are claiming that the Merrimack River isn't navigable, because it most certainly is navigable for recreational watercraft downstream of the hydroelectric dam in Lawrence (as the fact that the moveable bridges downstream of here are all operable would suggest).

Basiliere Bridge (Massachusetts)
Posted October 15, 2020

Sorry I'm just seeing this now. I don't think that is accurate. Based on my observations, it appears that the bridge was made to be moveable and that the mechanics were originally installed. I'm not sure whether the bridge actually operated for boat traffic or not, or whether the mechanics remain in place today.

The Merrimack River is navigable at least from its mouth in Newburyport up to Lawrence. The Gillis Memorial Bridge, Derek S. Hines Bridge, Rocks Village Bridge, and Bates Bridge are all moveable bridges that remain in active operation downstream of the Basiliere Bridge - and the fixed bridges between the Basiliere and Lawrence are all high enough to permit most recreational watercraft through. The Basiliere does have a higher clearance above the water even when lowered compared to the other bridges downstream, which makes me wonder if the bridge did indeed ever open for marine traffic under normal conditions, or if it perhaps only needed to operate during high water/flood conditions.

The river is not navigable through Lawrence due to the presence of the hydroelectric dam and waterfall at the O'Leary Bridge on MA-28 a short distance west of downtown. Both canals in Lawrence and their respective gatehouses/locks that would be used to bypass the dam are no longer in operation. However, the river does remain navigable between the top of the Lawrence dam and Manchester, NH (with Pawtucket Falls in Lowell remaining in active operation including at least one of the gatehouses). The lock and bypass channel at Amoskeag Falls in Manchester has been filled in and therefore the river is not navigable upstream of Manchester.

In summary, the Merrimack River has essentially two separate navigable sections, separated by the dam in Lawrence. As such, it would be plausible that the Basiliere Bridge was previously operable, though it is evident that it is no longer in operation today except perhaps during emergencies, given my field observations.

Posted October 15, 2020

The BridgeMapper.com photo here is the wrong bridge.

River Street Bridge (Massachusetts)
Posted October 13, 2020

There is significant concrete deterioration on this bridge, especially around the abutments and approaches. I observed some severe spalling as well as cracks in the concrete. Honestly I'm not surprised given how busy this bridge is, and given the fact that there tends to be a lot of traffic idling on the bridge waiting for traffic lights to change... but it does raise some concern about the long-term future of the structure. Interestingly, the Western Avenue Bridge which carries a near-equal amount of traffic is in much better condition.

Posted October 12, 2020

Unfortunately the solar glare was not being very kind to me when I was attempting to photograph this bridge.

Charlestown Bridge (Massachusetts)
Posted September 7, 2020

As of 09-07-20 this bridge is gone.

Posted August 27, 2020

Wow, what a difference not having snow on the ground makes for getting photos of this bridge!

Pineground Bridge (New Hampshire)
Posted August 26, 2020

Site visit 08/26/20: Bridge superstructure is in good condition. Substructure appears to be in good condition but could not definitively confirm. Deck is in fair condition but needs some work. There is evidence of rotting of the wooden planks, and some of the planks are starting to come loose.

Maestri Bridge (Louisiana)
Posted August 23, 2020

I broke up laughing when I saw Google Maps say that the Maestri Bridge is closed until 2030(!). Obviously it's just the way that GM has decided to indicate an indefinite road closure, given that the rehab project has been delayed once again and a reopening date is currently unknown.

Posted August 23, 2020

Bridge has reopened after 2 years. Ironically, given the Eads Bridge closure, this timing couldn't have been better.

https://www.stltoday.com/news/local/metro/after-2-years-the-...

Eads Bridge (Missouri)
Posted August 23, 2020

Bridge closed due to illegal street racing of all things:

https://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/st-loui...

Posted August 22, 2020

Google Street View, although old and blurry, seems to show the remnants of a multi-span wire suspension bridge at this location.

Posted August 20, 2020

Based on the earlier photos, it appears that pedestrians were previously allowed to walk on the bridge. Not anymore. As of August 2020 the bridge is fenced off at both ends with tons of threatening signage about "No Trespassing Police Take Notice" and the like. Not to mention that the north approach is so badly overgrown that you can't even see the bridge.

Posted August 20, 2020

This bridge was a disappointment. This is not a real covered bridge. This is a concrete stringer bridge with a faux wooden covering on top of it. The wooden trusses on the sides/walls of the covering are supporting the trusses that are above the deck, and the trusses above the deck are in turn supporting the roof of the structure. However, the entire wooden covering is only supporting its own weight. The load-bearing elements of the bridge are handled by the underlying concrete stringer structure.

I was confused when first approaching this bridge, as I didn't see any weight limit signs or warning signs about a "one-lane bridge". When I crossed the bridge, I noticed that it was a two-lane bridge, which is highly unusual among genuine covered bridges. I also noticed that the truss work looked modern and reminded me of the new decorative covered bridge that was installed at Quechee Dam in Vermont after Hurricane Irene. When I walked out on the bridge to investigate further, I then discovered that the cover is not part of the load-bearing structure.

Considering the fact that covered bridges are over-popularized as a whole, I am extremely surprised and frankly shocked that a covered bridge would be demolished and replaced with a faux structure. Unless the previous bridge was destroyed by flooding, which I do not believe to be the case, I can't think of any reason why a covered bridge should be demolished.

Ponakin Bridge (Massachusetts)
Posted August 20, 2020

I discovered and was pleasantly surprised that the trees that previously surrounded the Route 70 access point to this bridge had been mostly removed, and therefore the short trail is no longer in the woods and had thus been reopened. However, I was infuriated to find that whoever took all of the time and effort to clear the forest in the area had just dumped all of the tree limbs and branches in a pile right in front of the bridge approach!!

That being said, there is also a short trail down to the riverfront for canoe/kayak launches, and this was open so I was able to walk down and get quite a few photos looking up at the bridge from underneath. The bridge is in decent condition considering how long it has been abandoned and unmaintained. My biggest area of concern is that a portion of the lower chord is buckled and bent on both ends of the span and on both sides of the truss. I doubt there has been a major enough flood to rise the river level to the height of this bridge (which is much higher than the Atherton Bridge), so my guess is that the bottom chord was damaged by a large tree branch that smashed into it, likely while being whipped around by a strong wind gust. Despite the fact that significant portions of the wooden deck are missing, the underlying deck stringers and floorbeams remain intact.

The west side of the bridge, from Ponakin Road, is completely inaccessible without proper hiking equipment - the overgrowth is so extensive that I would not recommend that anyone attempt to go through there without proper equipment due to the likelihood of ticks and poison ivy.