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Valley Drive Bridge

Silver Bridge

Valley Drive Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: August 1, 2010

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Valley Drive Over Mill Creek
Youngstown: Mahoning County, Ohio: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1895 By Builder/Contractor: Youngstown Bridge Company of Youngstown, Ohio

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Main Span Length
84 Feet (25.5 Meters)
Structure Length
93 Feet (28.2 Meters)
Roadway Width
20 Feet (6.1 Meters)
1 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

A product of Youngstown's own Youngstown Bridge Company, this bridge is unlike any other bridge built by the company that survives today. The bridge uses an eyebar chain suspension system that was common in the United Kingdom but is extremely rare in the United States, with only a few examples present. The ornate decorations on this bridge also seem somewhat European as well, with decorative finals, portal cresting, and decorative railings. The eyebar suspension system is in its own right unusual and noteworthy, but even among eyebar chains it is somewhat unusual because it consists of two eyebar chains connected by additional eyebars, making it much like a "trussed eyebar chain."

In 2007 the historic integrity of this bridge was severely altered with the installation of a steel stringer bridge and complete removal of the entire flooring system and placement of a pier in the center of the bridge. The suspension system today is no longer functional and is merely a decoration. The only thing under the deck that is original is the decorative castings for the ends of the original floorbeams, which were thankfully saved and attached to the replacement floorbeams. It is excellent that Youngstown has chosen to not demolish this bridge, however it would have been nice to have instead seen a rehabilitation project that did not alter so much of this bridge. This bridge is completely unique and irreplaceable such that any aspect of the original bridge and design that is removed or altered is lost forever. Also, the pier at the center of the bridge makes the bridge look wrong and fake when viewed from beside or below.

This bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Photo Galleries and Videos: Valley Drive Bridge

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