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MN-100 Railroad Overpasses

   


MN-100 Railroad Overpasses

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: June 3, 2013
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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Railroad (Union Pacific) and Rail-Trail (Cedar Lake Trail) Over MN-100
Location
St. Louis Park: Hennepin County, Minnesota: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1936 By Builder/Contractor: American Bridge Company of New York, New York and Engineer/Design: Minnesota Highway Department

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
52 Feet (15.85 Meters)
Structure Length
109 Feet (33.22 Meters)
Roadway Width
66.5 Feet (20.27 Meters)
Spans
2 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
5309

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

This Bridge's Future Is At Risk!

View Archived National Bridge Inventory Report - Has Additional Details and Evaluation

View The Replacement Project Map, Showing Layout of Three Historic Bridges and Associated Roadways

View The Environmental Assessment For A Project Involving This and Two Other Historic Bridges

This historic bridge is slated for demolition and replacement!

This bridge is located on a short stretch of MN-100 where three historic overpass bridges of the same vintage can be found. Each bridge was designed with considerable attention given to the aesthetics of the bridge, and each bridge was also designed to be visually unique. This concept of not only making freeway overpasses look attractive, but varying them visually from bridge to bridge was something found in only the oldest limited access highways in the country, usually built before 1950. After 1950, and especially after the Interstate Highway System was created, limited access highway bridges either lacked aesthetics of any kind, or employed limited aesthetics in the same form on all bridges.

This bridge and the other two nearby historic overpass bridges are among the last remaining early expressway overpass bridges in Minnesota. Despite this fact, all three are slated for demolition and replacement. Because so few early overpass bridges remain, this will be a significant loss of Minnesota's transportation heritage.

This is actually a pair of parallel bridges sharing a common abutment. The northern bridge was originally built for the Minneapolis and St. Louis Railroad, but is today converted to a Cedar Lake rail-trail. The southern bridge was originally built for the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific Railroad (Milwaukee Road). The northern bridge provides a 66.5 foot roadway, while the southern bridge provides a 47.2 foot roadway and today carries a Union Pacific line. The design of the bridges is somewhat unusual. The outermost fascia girders are like through plate girders and they have an attractive haunched bottom chord giving the bridge its distinctive appearance. Looking under the bridge however, there are longitudinal stringers suggesting that most of the load on the bridge is carried like a steel stringer bridge. However, the massive nature of the fascia girders suggest that they might possibility contribute some load-bearing capacity as well.

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Photos and Videos: MN-100 Railroad Overpasses

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