Missouri was once home to an impressive collection of continuous and cantilever truss bridges, perhaps a larger collection than any other state. Today however, nearly all have been demolished, and nearly all that survive are planned for future demolition. Missouri has overseen one of the most complete annihilations of large-span historic truss bridges in the entire country. The loss of beauty, history, and engineering is incalculable. Bridges like this should be treasured landmarks. This bridge in particular, which today serves only northbound traffic with a newer parallel bridge serving southbound traffic, would seem to be a good candidate for long-term preservation given that the two bridges together provide four lanes for traffic. However, MoDOT has refused to (as Section 106 mitigation for demolition of similar bridges) develop a Historic Bridge Management Plan to ensure the long-term preservation of this bridge. This refusal is a strong indication that this bridge will eventually be targeted for demolition.
The southbound bridge was built in 1996.
In terms of engineering, this bridge offers a nice comparison: its approach spans are two-span continuous deck trusses, while its main spans are two span continuous through trusses. Its worth noting that two-span continuous deck truss bridges are somewhat uncommon (three-span configurations are more common).
Above: This bridge built as part of an impressive project to realign the Missouri River to eliminate a long, tight bend in the river. The old river is shown in the above drawing, and the new alignment, the alignment seen today, is shown as "future channel" outlined on the drawing.
Above: This photo shows the previous Missouri bridge, which was located on the old rivet alignment north of the existing bridges seen today. This former bridge was designed by the Strauss Bascule Bridge Co. of Chicago, Illinois and built in 1929.
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