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Red Mills Bridge

Red Mills Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: May 28, 2007

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Red Mill Road Over Fall Creek
Location
Red Mills (Rural): Tompkins County, New York: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1887 By Builder/Contractor: Groton Bridge Company of Groton, New York

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
59 Feet (18 Meters)
Structure Length
120 Feet (37 Meters)
Roadway Width
13.5 Feet (4.11 Meters)
Spans
2 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
3209790

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

This bridge is in storage!

Bridge Status: This bridge has been replaced, and is moved and in storage in a grass lot behind the Dryden Town Hall at 42.49276 -76.29134.

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

This bridge is similar to the Freese Road Bridge, but that is where similarity ends. Otherwise, this is an extremely rare and unique example of a continuous multi-span pin-connected pony truss. It is unusual to find two so close; they were likely built by the same builder. Multi-span pony trusses are uncommon enough, but a continuous multi-span pony truss is nearly unheard of. During the time of the pin-connected truss bridge, when multiple spans were needed the general solution was to build one with a simple span configuration. That is, each span between pier and pier/abutment would look and act as its own separate independent bridge structure. With a continuous configuration, from abutment to abutment the structure looks and acts as a single span, but piers are placed below parts of this long single span, thus it becomes a continuous multi-span bridge.

The Red Mills Road Bridge demonstrates this concept quite well. It retains excellent historic integrity. It is also a fairly old example, with an 1887 construction date. The bridge is wrought iron. Also, the pier for the bridge is a very unusual design, it is iron as well and is shaped similarly to the outriggers on the truss itself. The bridge features five panels on each span, for a total of ten panels on the entire continuous structure.

Thus, the Red Mills Bridge is an extremely rare structure that deserves nothing short of restoration. If it is insufficient for current traffic needs, it should be bypassed, but it should not be demolished under any circumstances. However, Tompkins County does indeed want to demolish this beautiful historic artifact. Currently, the New York SHPO is the only thing that stands in the county's way, as they are giving the county some trouble with this, and the county has been forced to re-evaluate the situation. However SHPO's only have limited power over road agencies, and thus it remains likely that this structure will still face demolition. If this bridge is demolished, a serious blow will have been dealt to New York's rich transportation heritage.

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Photo Galleries and Videos: Red Mills Bridge

 
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Bridge Photo-Documentation
A collection of overview and detail photos. 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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Maps and Links: Red Mills Bridge

Coordinates (Latitude, Longitude):
42.527780,-76.321980

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