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Washington Avenue Bridge

Street Views 


So, when is a bridge a girder--and a steel stringer--and a deck truss--all in one? This bridge started out in 1965 as a plain deck girder bridge and remained as such until 2010, when a massive project began to upgrade the bridge to carry light-rail traffic. The plan was to add stringers to increase the load-carrying capability, but the original stucture's rigid cross-members didn't allow it. The design engineers came up with a very creative and innovative way to address this--instead of solid stringers, trusses were designed and installed, one member at a time, to fit around the existing sway bracing without having to remove any of it! And so, as a result, the main spans still retain their full original girder system, with multiple "stringer-trusses" to support the light rail vehicles.


Girder bridge over Mississippi River & East River Pkwy on Washington Avenue
Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota
Open to traffic
Built 1965; upgraded 2010-2012
- AECOM of Los Angeles. California
- Light Rail
- Metro Transit
Girder/steel stringer/deck truss
Length of largest span: 315.3 ft.
Total length: 1,131.0 ft.
Deck width: 58.1 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+44.97318, -93.23945   (decimal degrees)
44°58'23" N, 93°14'22" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/481118/4979999 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Saint Paul West
Average daily traffic (as of 2005)
Inventory numbers
MN 9360 (Minnesota bridge number)
BH 59219 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of August 2017)
Overall condition: Fair
Superstructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Good (7 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 90.3 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • January 14, 2014: New Street View added by Matt Lohry
  • January 13, 2014: Added by Matt Lohry


  • Matt Lohry
  • Luke


Washington Avenue Bridge
Posted June 5, 2014, by Patrick Watz (pwatz [at] hntb [dot] com)

Retrofit design for LRT was completed by AECOM's Philly office.

Washington Avenue Bridge
Posted April 13, 2014, by Fmiser (fmiser [at] gmail [dot] com)

Pat - which designer? The original - or the 2010 rebuild?

Washington Avenue Bridge
Posted April 13, 2014, by Patrick Goggin (goggin [at] augsburg [dot] edu)

I'm writing a paper on this bridge for a college class, and I've been having a hard time finding out anything about this bridge's designer. Does anyone know who designed it or where I could find that information?