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This is a large and beautiful landmark bridge that is similar to the Speers Belle Vernon Bridge. It looks like a steel arch bridge visually, but functions as a continuous truss throughout the three main spans. It was likely constructed using the cantilever method, but upon completion it functions as a continuous truss.
The Historic Bridge Inventory found this bridge to be not historic! That assessment is outdated and needs to be updated to reflect the fact that of the small number of Monongahela River Bridges outside of Pittsburgh that were found historic, most have been or soon will be demolished by PennDOT. Those that remain, like this bridge, are more significant as increasingly rare examples of large truss bridges in Pennsylvania. This particular bridge has good historic integrity and retains ornamental details like the piers at the ends of the main spans, the railing on the sidewalk, and the stairways.
Information and Findings From Pennsylvania's Historic Bridge Inventory
Discussion of Bridge
The 1,948' long, 30-span bridge built by the state in 1951 has a 3-span continuous thru truss main spans. The 450' long main span with a suspended roadway is flanked by 210' long spans. The other approach spans are stringers. The trusses are traditionally composed for the period with the chords and web members being built up box sections. The cantilevered sidewalk is finished with a Moderne-style metal railing. The bridge was rehabilitated in 1985. Although a major river crossing, the bridge has no innovative or distinctive details that distinguish it from the many other post-WW II major bridges in the region. It utilizes engineering principles and details developed and used through the first half of the 20th century. Neither the bridge nor its setting are historically or technologically significant.
Discussion of Surrounding Area
The bridge carries a 4 lane state highway and 1 sidewalk over the Monongahela River, SR 837, and the former P&LE Railroad tracks between Elizabeth and West Elizabeth boroughs.
Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: No
Coordinates (Latitude, Longitude):
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HistoricBridges.org Bridge Browser: View listed bridges within 10 miles (16 kilometers) of this bridge.
2021 National Bridge Inventory: View listed bridges within 0.5 miles (0.8 kilometers) of this bridge.
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