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Westfield Bridge

Great River Bridge

Westfield Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: October 18, 2013

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Elm Street (Southbound US-202 and MA-10) Over Westfield River
Westfield: Hampden County, Massachusetts: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1938 By Builder/Contractor: Daniel O'Connells Sons of Holyoke, Massachusetts and Engineer/Design: Fay, Spofford, and Thorndike of Boston, Massachusetts

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Main Span Length
184 Feet (56.1 Meters)
Structure Length
375 Feet (114.3 Meters)
Roadway Width
40 Feet (12.19 Meters)
2 Main Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

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

View Historical Article About This Bridge

View Massachusetts Historical Commission (MHC) Inventory Forms For This Historic Bridge

This bridge is an unusual structure type, a two-span continuous through truss, of short length for a bridge of this type. The bridge is designed so that the truss looks like a single span Polygonal Warren through truss, but it has a pier under it at mid-span, forming the two-span continuous truss design.

This bridge is a rare example of a historic bridge preserved by construction of a second modern bridge to carry one direction of traffic, leaving the historic bridge to only have to carry one direction of traffic as well. This is called a one-way couplet, and it is an excellent way to preserve a historic bridge that is not wide enough or doesn't have enough lanes. This particular one-way couplet is more substantial than most. The new one-way bridge was designed to look somewhat similar to the historic bridge and as such is also a two-span continuous through truss following the same configuration, something that is normally never built today. The new bridge does not create a false sense of history however, since all members are clearly of modern design with none of the rivets, v-lacing and lattice found on the historic truss bridge. Also, there was actually a whole new section of one-way road constructed, so that in this area, US-202 is actually separated as two one-way roads for a number of city blocks. In between the two bridges next to the river the gap was filled in with a small park area that, especially on the north side of the river, is landscaped with symmetry in mind, complimenting the symmetry of the two bridges. The new bridge was built in 2011-2012.

Above: Main plaque as seen in 2020. This plaque has been restored to the bridge; it was missing when HistoricBridges.org documented the bridge in 2013. Photo Credit: Geoff Hubbs

Previous bridges at this location included the immediately preceding rivet-connected lattice through truss, and an earlier wooden covered bridge.


Photo Galleries and Videos: Westfield Bridge

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Maps and Links: Westfield Bridge

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