This bascule bridge consists of a through truss, double leaf Scherzer type rolling lift bascule bridge. Fixed through truss spans provide an approach to the bridge. These approach spans make this one of the most unique historic bascule bridges in existence. In the Great Lakes region, most movable bridges cross relatively small rivers, and as such only a short approach (if any) is present leading up to the movable span. Elsewhere in the country, such as on the east coast, movable bridges do have long fixed approaches that lead up to the movable span. However, even in these locations, the approach system is usually composed of small, mundane span types like steel stringer or t-beam spans. In contrast, the majority of the Sturgeon Bay Bridge's approach spans have a 165 foot span length which is actually slightly longer than the bascule span. As a result, the bridge is an impressive structure composed of beautiful trusses from start to finish. The bascule span itself is also significant as a rare truss bascule bridge in Wisconsin, and a significant example of a rolling lift type bascule in Wisconsin. The engineers who designed this bridge, Keller and Harrington, were previously associated with the Scherzer Rolling Lift Bridge Company, the inventors of the rolling lift bascule bridge type.
This is a large, landmark bridge that is highly significant. It also is located in a county with very few historic bridges. Despite this, the bridge was at risk for demolition until a group of citizens successfully managed to get demolition plans canceled for this bridge and instead have the bridge rehabilitated in 2010, the first major rehabilitation since 1979. The bridge is today one of the greatest historic bridge preservation success stories and an icon for the city. The Steel Bridge Songfest, originally held to raise funds to help save the bridge continues to take place in the wake of the rehabilitation.
Above: Aerial view of bridge, August 14, 2020. Click for enlargement. Photo Credit: Doug Heim, Angelcopter, LLC
Main PlaqueSTUREGON BAY
WAUSAU IRON WORKS
Lift Span Plaque
DEDICATED TO HONOR
National Register Plaque
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