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6th Street Bridge

Kinzie Avenue Bridge

6th Street Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: April 14, 2013

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
6th Street Over Root River and Horlick Drive
Racine: Racine County, Wisconsin: United States
Structure Type
Concrete Open Spandrel Deck Arch, Fixed and Approach Spans: Concrete Rigid-Frame,
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1928 By Builder/Contractor: Zendala Construction Company of Manitowoc, Wisconsin and Engineer/Design: Charles Whitney

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Main Span Length
129.6 Feet (39.5 Meters)
Structure Length
160.8 Feet (49.01 Meters)
Roadway Width
46 Feet (14.02 Meters)
1 Main Span(s) and 1 Approach Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

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

View Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) Documentation For This Bridge

HAER Drawings, PDF - HAER Data Pages, PDF

This bridge is a uniquely attractive example of a concrete arch bridge. The bridge's arch span crosses the Root River, but also has an approach span over an adjacent Horlick Drive. The concrete of the bridge is carefully detailed for aesthetic purposes. Among these features are the stepped design of the railings whose outer face blends seamlessly in with the arch superstructure. The arch columns have a repeating arch design under the bridge deck, and at the top of the outer portions of the columns, there is a decorative design. In between each of the columns along the span, the concrete at the outer base of the deck had a subtle arch shape between each column. Unlike many open spandrel arch bridges, this one has a solid barrel as opposed to a ribbed design. Perhaps the most striking feature of the bridge is the colorful sculptures set into the concrete. These are complimented by decorative color tile mosaics on the bridge railing interiors.

This bridge was designed by Charles S. Whitney. Whitney was a noted engineer in southeastern Wisconsin operating a firm in Milwaukee, and a number of unique concrete bridges were designed by him, this bridge being one such example. Whitney later got together with with famous bridge engineer Othmar H. Ammann (noted for the design of several large bridges in New York City), forming the firm Ammann & Whitney. Ammann & Whitney remains in business today. More information is available here.


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