Pennsylvania's state standard truss bridges, mostly built in the 1920s and 1930s, are most commonly Parker truss bridges. A smaller number are polygonal Warren truss bridges like this one. Thanks to demolition, surviving examples of these polygonal Warren truss bridges are shrinking even more. This particular bridge stands out not only for the polygonal truss design, but also for its multi-span pony truss design. Multi-span pony truss bridges are unusual. Normally crossings warranting multiple spans would utilize at least one through truss span.
Pennsylvania's Historic Bridge Inventory is unusual because it completely wrote off all truss bridges built to a state standard plan as "not historic." This goes against practice found in other states, where early state standard plans, as well as good, or large/long representative examples of the various state standard plans from other period are found to be historic as representative examples of engineering that embody a period of history, which is Criterion C of the National Register of Historic Places. It is unclear why these bridges were all excluded in Pennsylvania. HistoricBridges.org disagrees with the "not historic" br
Information and Findings From Pennsylvania's Historic Bridge Inventory
Discussion of Bridge
The 3 span, 371'-long Warren pony truss bridge with polygonal top chord is composed of riveted built-up sections for the chords and rolled beams for the diagonals. The bridge built in 1932 is supported on concrete abutments and ashlar piers with concrete caps. A sidewalk with metal lattice railings is cantilevered off of one side. The rolled floorbeams and stringers support a concrete-filled steel deck placed in 1970. The bridge is a late and undistinguished example of a bridge type and design that has been in common use since the late-19thcentury. It was built as a replacement bridge by the state highway department at a crossing that has been in service since the early 19th century when there was a covered bridge. In standard fashion, the state highway department used the well-established riveted truss bridge technology, and repaired and reused the piers of a previous bridge. The bridge has no noteworthy details or features. It is not historically or technologically distinguished by its setting or context.
Discussion of Surrounding Area
The bridge carries a 2 lane road and a sidewalk over the Schuylkill River. To the southwest of the bridge are open fields. At the southeast quadrant is an abandoned factory complex of buildings dating from the late-19th to the early 20th century. At the northeast quadrant is an early 19th century residence. The area is dominated by a mix of late-19th to late-20thcentury commercial, industrial and residential buildings.
Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: No
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