3 votes

Memorial Bridge (Old)


Portsmouth Memorial Bridge

Photo taken by C Hanchey in October 2009


BH Photo #147772



Vertical lift bridge over Piscataqua River on US 1 in Portsmouth
Portsmouth, Rockingham County, New Hampshire, and York County, Maine
Built 1923, rehabilitated 1982, closed to vehicle traffic in 2011
Main span: Warren through truss vertical lift
Approaches: Polygonal Warren through trusses
Length of largest span: 302.2 ft.
Total length: 1,201.2 ft.
Deck width: 27.9 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 17.7 ft.
Eligible for the National Register of Historic Places
Also called
Piscataqua River Bridge
World War Memorial Bridge (original official name)
Approximate latitude, longitude
+43.07889, -70.75250   (decimal degrees)
43°04'44" N, 70°45'09" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
19/357337/4771065 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Average daily traffic (as of 2015)
Inventory number
BH 25017 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of October 2017)
Overall condition: Good
Superstructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 89.2 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • April 13, 2020: New photo from Geoff Hubbs
  • September 6, 2016: New photo from Dana and Kay Klein
  • February 23, 2015: Photo imported by Dave King
  • July 25, 2014: New Street View added by Ralph Demars
  • August 22, 2013: New photos from Douglas Butler
  • May 27, 2012: Updated by Nathan Holth: This bridge has been demolished.
  • December 9, 2010: Updated by Nathan Holth: This bridge is now doomed. Added Planned Demo Date.
  • September 5, 2010: New photo from John Reidy
  • April 13, 2010: New Street View added by Nathan Holth
  • October 28, 2009: Bridge is temporarily closed for repairs as of Oct. 16, 2009

Related Bridges 



Memorial Bridge
Posted September 15, 2013, by Steven W Lindsey (SteveLindsey60 [at] hotmail [dot] com)

A successful nomination to the National Trust for Historic Preservation's "Eleven Endangered Places" list (2009.) The loss of this bridge is a rarity as few listees are actually lost.

See: http://www.preservationnation.org/issues/11-most-endangered/...

It was the highest rated New Hampshire historic bridge in the state according to the Lichtenstein Report.

The Sarah Mildred Long Lift Bridge upstream is also scheduled to be replaced.

Memorial Bridge
Posted February 8, 2012, by Will Truax (Bridgewright [at] gmail [dot] com)

The lift span arrived by barge eighty nine years ago -


After multiple delays in suggested schedule this week, it today leaves as it arrived -


Memorial Bridge
Posted February 6, 2012, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Demolition is ongoing. Main span removal this week.


Memorial Bridge
Posted December 19, 2011, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

In the giving mood...

Photo by Todd Baslee

Memorial Bridge
Posted December 19, 2011, by Will Truax (Bridgewright [at] gmail [dot] com)

Locals bid their bridge farewell - http://vimeo.com/33684834

Memorial Bridge
Posted December 1, 2011, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Sometimes I feel sorry for how blind the general public is to the reality of the bridge world. These people apparently were led to believe that the replacement bridge would look as nice as the historic bridge. Only now, in the end, do they realize their grave error. This project is a perfect example as to why attempting to replicate historic bridges fails. If the community likes a historic bridge, only the preservation of the historic bridge is acceptable. HNTB thinks the replacement bridge is awesome because it is a truss without gusset plates. Great, that just makes the bridge look even more plain and ugly. You eliminate rivets, built-up beams, v-lacing, lattice, bracing, and what do you have left? A truss that is what I call a "Toothpick Bridge." A truss so plain and simplistic that it has lost the qualities that make a truss bridge beautiful.



Memorial Bridge
Posted July 22, 2010, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

This spectacular historic bridge continues to be in grave risk for demolition and replacement: http://www.fosters.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100722/G...

It probably doesn't help that this bridge borders Maine... which has demolished some spectacular historic bridges.