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Prospect Bridge

Prospect Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth and Rick McOmber

Bridge Documented: March 2, 2007

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Water Street (OH-47) Over Scioto River
Location
Prospect: Marion County, Ohio: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1913 By Builder/Contractor: Standard Engineering Company of Toledo, Ohio

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
1985
Main Span Length
217 Feet (66.14 Meters)
Structure Length
226 Feet (68.88 Meters)
Roadway Width
22 Feet (6.71 Meters)
Spans
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
5102251

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

This bridge no longer exists!

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

This historic bridge was demolished and replaced July 2007.

This bridge is a magnificent structure, providing a single clear span of 226 feet over the Scioto River, and composed of eleven panels. It is one of those bridges that acts as a gateway for Prospect, providing a dramatic entrance into the city. It is ornately decorated, featuring attractive portal knee bracing, as well as a decorative design on top of the portal bracing. A late example of a pin-connected truss bridge, this is a very wide bridge, and features an unusual design of bracing overhead, in the form of a section of bracing that runs parallel to the top chord through the sway bracing.

This bridge appears to have once had cantilevered sidewalks, which were removed. The lattice railings from those sidewalks appear to have been saved, and indeed are the railings seen on the bridge today. They are oddly mounted inside the vertical members, and evidence of some cutting of parts of the railings to make them fit around diagonals is apparent. The bridge likely had no railings inside the truss lines prior to this alteration.

This bridge is worthy of being considered historic for its impressive span size. It is an unusually wide structure, and is well-decorated. It acts as an important gateway for Prospect, and is arguably the center attraction of the town. Unfortunately, ODOT does not agree with any of this, and feels that the only way to deal with the poor condition of the bridge is to demolish it. Under Section 106, they offered the bridge to a third party, but as one might guess, the bridge is of a size that only a unit as rich as the government can (and should) have to bear the burden of restoring this bridge for light vehicular or pedestrian use. It would have been nice to see this bridge restored, even with retrofitting, to allow this bridge to remain as an important historic landmark, and gateway for Prospect.

Information and Findings From Ohio's Historic Bridge Inventory

Setting/Context

The bridge carries a 2-lane highway over a stream in an area of 19th and early-20th-century residential and commercial development in Prospect.

Physical Description

The 1 span, 226'-long, pin-connected Parker thru truss bridge is traditionally composed of built-up compression members and eye bar or rod tension members. The bridge has lattice portals decoratively finished with a circular medallion plaque and wrought-iron crestline. The stringers and open-steel grid deck were replaced in 1985. It's unclear from the available photos but it appears floorbeams were replaced or connections strengthened. The bridge is supported on concrete abutments.

Integrity

Deck replacement (1985)

Summary of Significance

The pin-connected Parker thru truss was fabricated by the Standard Engineering Company in 1913. It is a complete and long-span example of its type/design in the state context. It has had a deck replacement, but that has not compromised its ability to convey its technological significance. A project was planned to replace the bridge in 1999 with an adverse effect, but the bridge is still in place in 2008. The eligible recommendation of the prior inventory remains appropriate.

Camelback and Parker trusses are members of the Pratt-family of trusses with sloped top chords Technologically, Camelback and Parker trusses differ only in the number of top chord slopes (Camelbacks have exactly five slopes, and Parkers have more than five slopes.) The sloped-chord trusses provide the greatest depth at midspan where it is needed to accommodate the stresses, meaning that less material is needed in their construction as compared to a parallel chord truss of similar span, but fabrication is made more difficult due to the varying lengths of the members. The sloped-chord trusses are often associated with longer spans where the savings in material is great enough to be worth the additional fabrication costs. The practice of sloping the top chords dates to at least the 1840s and appeared early in the development of metal trusses. As with other truss designs, pin connections were used from the 1870s to 1900s, and mostly phased out during the 1910s. Rivet connections were being used by the early 1900s and were prevalent from the 1910s to 1940s. Standardized rivet-connected Camelback and Parker designs were used by many state highway departments, including the Ohio State Highway Department. There are 23 trusses (8 Camelback, 15 Parker) in the Ohio inventory (Phase 1A, 2008).

Justification

The later pin connected thru truss bridge is one of 13 extant examples of bridges with polygonal upper chords and/or subdivided panels in the state that date from 1888 until 1923. It is of moderate significance given that the numbers in the population.

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: Yes

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Photo Galleries and Videos: Prospect Bridge

 
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