The St. Charles Road Bridge is a rare example of a 90 foot plan concrete camelback bridge in decent condition. The 90 foot plan was the largest size that was designated by MSHD in its collection of standard plans.
Among Gratiot County's three curved chord through girder bridges, the Lincoln Road Bridge was the only one to appear on MDOT's Historic Bridges website. This is apparently because of its older construction date. Indeed that bridge is significant as one of the first examples of its type to be built, and is one of the oldest remaining today. But it is worth noting that the structure type was only built for about a decade. Even the last girder to be built in Michigan was under ten years newer than the Lincoln Road bridge. With perhaps only a few dozen of this structure type remaining, and that number decreasing, all of these bridges are significant, including the St. Charles Road Bridge and the Grant Road Bridge. Getting Gratiot County to preserve all three of their concrete girder bridges might prove difficult. Perhaps they might agree to preserve one of them however. If this was the case, logic would initially seem to suggest that the Lincoln Road Bridge should be that one, as it was determined to have the most historic significance. However, it may be pertinent, to suggest that the St. Charles Road Bridge might be the way to go. The difference of historic important between a handful or years, versus the structural quality of the actual structure suggest that the St. Charles Road Bridge is more important today. Restoring the St. Charles Road Bridge would be less costly, and because less concrete patching would be needed on its comparatively pristine surface, it would retain a greater degree of historic integrity. It is quite unfortunate, but visually, there is very little left of the Lincoln Road Bridge to preserve. The damage has already been done for the most part. On the other hand, if funding worked more effectively in Michigan, repairs would be less costly that demolition and replacement, and then it would be sensible to restore all three of Gratiot County's girder bridges!
2009 Overview Photos
Original / Full Size Photos
|A collection of overview photos, taken March 15, 2009. This gallery offers photos in the highest available resolution and file size in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer|
2009 Overview Photos
Mobile Optimized Photos
|A collection of overview photos, taken March 15, 2009. This gallery features data-friendly, fast-loading photos in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer|
Winter 2006 Bridge Photo-Documentation
|A collection of overview and detail photos, taken Winter 2006. This photo gallery contains a combination of Original Size photos and Mobile Optimized photos in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer|
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