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    Thread: 7,980 Questionable Bridges in the USA - Any of them near you?

    1. Member derekjl's Avatar
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      08-07-2012 04:18 PM #36
      This map must be outdated by a few years. There are a few bridges near me that were rebuilt several years ago and are still listed as the old ones (1951, etc.).
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      08-07-2012 04:24 PM #37
      One very bad bridge (Sellwood Br.) here in Portland is finally getting rebuilt to the tune of close to $300 million. Here's what was wrong with it:

      The bridge has numerous deficiencies, including:

      Poor structural condition, with a limited service life
      Vehicle weight restrictions, which have forced an average of 1,400 trucks and buses each day to find a different river crossing route
      Geologic instability on the west end that has damaged the bridge
      Narrow travel lanes with no shoulders or median
      Short stopping distances and lines of sight for motorists
      One narrow sidewalk insufficient for bicyclists and pedestrians
      Poor connections to established trails at each end of the bridge
      Tight ramps at west end that cannot easily accommodate large vehicles
      High risk of structural failure in an earthquake
      A National Bridge Inventory sufficiency rating of 2 out of a possible score of 100 (see next question)

      I think the bridge in MN had a rating of 50 a couple years before it collapsed. While the Sellwood Bridge doesn't get nearly as much traffic as the I-35 bridge the rating it has is pretty scary.


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      08-07-2012 04:27 PM #38
      Quote Originally Posted by derekjl View Post
      This map must be outdated by a few years. There are a few bridges near me that were rebuilt several years ago and are still listed as the old ones (1951, etc.).
      Yep--the 9th Street NE bridge here in DC was just replaced by a new bridge six months ago. The old, suspect span was demolished.

    4. Member FigureFive's Avatar
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      08-07-2012 04:31 PM #39
      Cool. Not a single bridge listed within the state of TN. I hop e that doesn't mean they just haven't surveyed the state.

    5. 08-07-2012 04:32 PM #40
      Quote Originally Posted by leaftye View Post
      That's because projects are often started even though there's no budget plan for maintenance.
      Indeed

      Quote Originally Posted by jmj View Post
      If only there was some superhuge government program that we could scale way back and use the money for infrastructure............


      The amount that would be scaled back would be insignificant compared to the amount of money needed to continually (what people miss) fix out infrastructure.

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      08-07-2012 04:45 PM #41
      Quote Originally Posted by seadoo2006 View Post
      Yup ...

      lol that was the first thing i thought of when i saw the topic =]
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      08-07-2012 04:58 PM #42
      Quote Originally Posted by G0to60 View Post
      One very bad bridge (Sellwood Br.) here in Portland is finally getting rebuilt to the tune of close to $300 million. Here's what was wrong with it:


      A National Bridge Inventory sufficiency rating of 2 out of a possible score of 100 (see next question)


      Ha! I as going to post this. It was definitely a disaster waiting to happen.
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    8. Member Chmeeee's Avatar
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      08-07-2012 04:58 PM #43
      Quote Originally Posted by 2.0T_Convert View Post
      His map calls onramps in Hartford build in 1965 as bad with a purple icon (whatever that means)

      Meanwhile the 100+ year old bulkeley bridge which carries I-84 over the river is perfectly sound according to his map.
      As far as I know there's nothing wrong with the Bulkeley Bridge. It's a historic structure that they've done a pretty good job of maintaining. Just because it's old doesn't mean it's automatically bad.
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      08-07-2012 05:00 PM #44
      Quote Originally Posted by Chmeeee View Post
      As far as I know there's nothing wrong with the Bulkeley Bridge. It's a historic structure that they've done a pretty good job of maintaining. Just because it's old doesn't mean it's automatically bad.
      Absolutely. Bridges move and require maintenance. Neglect that and they can go bad relatively quickly. Maintain one properly and it's service life is indefinite.
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      08-07-2012 05:38 PM #45
      Interstate 95 & Somerset St
      Last Updated by tadmor on Jul 25
      Built: 1966
      National Bridge ID 6.70095E+14
      189,950 cars per day (avg.)

      15673

      Philadelphia, PA
      AND


      Somerset St & Lehigh, Somerset St
      Last Updated by tadmor on Jul 25
      Built: 1966
      National Bridge ID 670095023413650
      189,950 cars per day (avg.)

      15673

      Philadelphia County, PA
      Those are both elevated sections of I-95 a block from each other that are just like the rest of the stretch of 95 that runs over Philly...I don't see why they'd be any different.

    11. Member koston.'s Avatar
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      08-07-2012 05:56 PM #46
      Evergreen Point Floating Bridge - Wa 520

      This is a core part of infrastructure in the Seattle area. Designed for 40 years of duty or something like that, which we've hit. But the bridge has also been over capacity for a number of year... aka - we're one bad storm/car crash/drunk idiot in a boat away from it completly collasping.

      We have a replacement in the works, but it was nearly killed off multiple times by people who think a 1.5hr 15 miles commute would be fun.



      edit; some more local politics - rich people on the lake nearly won a suit to block building the bridge because it'll be like 20ft above the water "blocking" their view.

      When my grandparents were forced out of their property for 405 in Bellevue, we lost MILLIONS in potential real estate... yet they moved on without a challenge because the right of way/common good outweighed my need to be a trust fund kid in a Ferrari
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    12. Member ABAcabby's Avatar
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      08-07-2012 06:14 PM #47
      also this..damn seattle with their heavily populated old as **** bridges..


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      08-07-2012 06:31 PM #48
      Quote Originally Posted by FigureFive View Post
      Cool. Not a single bridge listed within the state of TN. I hop e that doesn't mean they just haven't surveyed the state.
      I think your map isn't loading correctly. There are at least 30 in TN. Two are red high traffic icons, but I know that the one here has been replaced recently.
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    14. Member turbinepowered's Avatar
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      08-07-2012 06:37 PM #49
      Quote Originally Posted by McBanagon View Post


      http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...135192360.html

      Link to his Google Map
      http://saveourbridges.com/map.html

      Maybe it's just a project so he can promote his book, but it's interesting nonetheless.
      Booyah! No tags for SC on the map, and their list of "unaddressed bridges" didn't include any entries for SC.

      We may be failing in some ways, but damn if we can't build and maintain a bridge!
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      08-07-2012 06:47 PM #50
      I see alot of labour work in the near future.

      Time to import some Indians and Pakistanis to work..

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      08-07-2012 06:53 PM #51
      Quote Originally Posted by Rob. View Post
      I see alot of labour work in the near future.

      Time to raid unemployment offices to work..
      FTFY. At least more how it ought to work.
      Quote Originally Posted by zukiphile View Post
      There is an area of a normal brain that lets the owner know the object works and needs to be left alone. Not all of us have it. It is like being colorblind.

    17. 08-07-2012 07:00 PM #52
      Only one near me.


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      08-07-2012 07:22 PM #53
      Airport Rd & Mossy Creek Trib.
      Built: 1951
      National Bridge ID 000000031150040
      140 cars per day (avg.)

      2683

      White County, GA

      This bridge is on a one lane gravel road. Its rarely used that 140 figure would be almost for a year rather than a day.

      Its actualy very solid and in my opinion shouldnt be on the list.
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    19. Member sortadelux's Avatar
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      08-08-2012 01:42 AM #54
      Quote Originally Posted by sortadelux View Post
      I wonder how long ago this list was compiled. I know most of the bridges listed in my area but only suspected a few of them. A few of then I drive weekly. One that I expected to see but didn't is the Murray Morgan bridge in down town Tacoma. It was built in 1913 and closed to vehicle traffic in 2007. Up untill recently you could still access it on foot and look THROUGH the asphalt deck to the waterway below. That and it had more greenery growing on it than my lawn. They started a rehab project on it early in 2011 and its slated to re-open december this year.

      So this map is atleast 2007 or older or he's fishing with his numbers. The MM bridge is on there (called the 11th st bridge) and he lists it as carrying over 12K cars per day. This bridge hasn't been open in 5 years and I have a hard time believing it carried that much traffic near the end of it's life. If I remember correctly it got a 1 rating out of 100 before it was closed.
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    20. Member BattleRabbit's Avatar
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      08-08-2012 02:43 AM #55
      Woo! Two bridges* in my current town are "questionable!"

      Go Waterford.

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      08-08-2012 03:12 AM #56
      Quote Originally Posted by gti_matt View Post
      Only one near me.

      Drive on that everyday. No fear. I also fly over it often.
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      08-08-2012 04:52 AM #57
      Quote Originally Posted by MK5golf View Post
      Im not sure how you mericans are doing down there but generally I hear road construction (especially quality of roads) is much better than up here (IE Only the wonderful province which I happen to inhabit, quebec )
      Weve had overpasses colapse and kill people (seriously) and highways that go through tunnels (the ville marie expressway... the highway goes "under" the downtown core) have huge slabs of concrete falling down off of them.
      Theres this bridge that links the island of montreal to the south shore. Its called the mercier bridge. the rust is so bad that at some points you can see the water beneath you. Its still open to the public (albeit only one way traffic and its apperantly undergoing "extensive" renovations)
      Dont even get me started with the potholes
      I hear that there are plenty of bridges and passages that the romans built thousands of years ago that are still doing their jobs just fine
      That's because SNC Lavalin is/was crooked as hell and their projects suck ass. From 2005-2008 they built the William R Bennett Bridge in Kelowna, BC. They used the wrong mortar for the joints connecting the various segments which had to be replaced within 2 years of opening. Even today they're saying the bridge is deteriorating more rapidly than expected but to anyone who lives or has visited the Okanagan this isn't a surprise as the bridge deck has been bumpy since day 1. I thought this was just "how bridges were" but when I crossed the Golden Ears Bridge that connects Maple Ridge and Langley 2 years ago I couldn't believe how smooth that road surface was. But if you think about it a smooth surface would be a huge design and engineering requirement because physics could really come into play if say you decide to bounce things like loaded logging trucks across a bridge. Suddenly that logging truck can't be just calculated as a constant force as the load is literally jack hammering away as it rolls across.

      In Canada and some parts of the US (from what I've seen) we build roads as a make work project. We want them to last 3-5 years so that in 3-5 years we can do it over again. Other countries like Germany build roads to last so that they don't have to redo the damn thing over and over and over again. Yes, there might be some maintenance and it will initially cost more but long term it's by far a better option.

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      08-08-2012 06:52 AM #58
      Quote Originally Posted by [spoon] View Post
      That's because SNC Lavalin is/was crooked as hell and their projects suck ass. From 2005-2008 they built the William R Bennett Bridge in Kelowna, BC. They used the wrong mortar for the joints connecting the various segments which had to be replaced within 2 years of opening. Even today they're saying the bridge is deteriorating more rapidly than expected but to anyone who lives or has visited the Okanagan this isn't a surprise as the bridge deck has been bumpy since day 1. I thought this was just "how bridges were" but when I crossed the Golden Ears Bridge that connects Maple Ridge and Langley 2 years ago I couldn't believe how smooth that road surface was. But if you think about it a smooth surface would be a huge design and engineering requirement because physics could really come into play if say you decide to bounce things like loaded logging trucks across a bridge. Suddenly that logging truck can't be just calculated as a constant force as the load is literally jack hammering away as it rolls across.

      In Canada and some parts of the US (from what I've seen) we build roads as a make work project. We want them to last 3-5 years so that in 3-5 years we can do it over again. Other countries like Germany build roads to last so that they don't have to redo the damn thing over and over and over again. Yes, there might be some maintenance and it will initially cost more but long term it's by far a better option.
      IIRC in my native city of Fort Worth when they rebuilt a major stretch of I-35W and I-30 they used something called 150 year concrete.

      The map shows 2 bridges there that haven't been touched in years, but weren't part of the reconstruction.

      As far as where I live now, there's no tags in my county.
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      08-08-2012 08:43 AM #59
      I only cross this one frequently. It doesn't really scare me. The one that did is now closed. That ones pedestrian walkway had holes the size of children you could look straight down through to the water.

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      08-08-2012 08:57 AM #60
      Quote Originally Posted by [spoon] View Post
      In Canada and some parts of the US (from what I've seen) we build roads as a make work project. We want them to last 3-5 years so that in 3-5 years we can do it over again. Other countries like Germany build roads to last so that they don't have to redo the damn thing over and over and over again. Yes, there might be some maintenance and it will initially cost more but long term it's by far a better option.

      I'm not going to say that there's not a good amount of stupidity going around in the way that projects get constructed in some cases, but I never understand why people think that anybody is building things to intentionally fail in three years or whatever. I see a lot of people saying this is intentional to "justify budgets" or "make more work for themselves." We are SO far behind in this country in maintaining out aging infrastructure and making badly needed extensions, widening, improvements, etc that we have no need whatsoever to make even more work.

      Sometimes crappy projects get built, but it's not because anybody in the process wanted that. No, it's just a combination of incompetence and the natural result of a lowest bidder system.
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      08-08-2012 09:10 AM #61
      only a couple near me and indiana doesn't look too bad overall. however i'm gonna call bs on 55 cars a day on this bridge.

      Ferguson Rd & Lake Ditch
      Last Updated by tadmor on Jul 24
      Built 1940
      National Bridge ID 5500080
      55 cars per day

      5114

      Morgan County, IN

    27. 08-08-2012 10:09 AM #62
      Pulaski Memorial Skyway
      Built: 1932
      National Bridge ID 704150
      65,000 cars per day (avg.)




      The bridges have been listed on the federal and state registers of historic places since 2005. Since being built they have been little altered; they have not been significantly repaired since 1984. In 2007, the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) began a rehabilitation program which it estimates will cost about $1 billion....

      I drive on this often, surprises me how it hasnt collapsed yet. Roads are ****ed, pieces of the railings are held on by nets/ropes...
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      08-08-2012 10:33 AM #63
      Quote Originally Posted by Chmeeee View Post
      I'm not going to say that there's not a good amount of stupidity going around in the way that projects get constructed in some cases, but I never understand why people think that anybody is building things to intentionally fail in three years or whatever. I see a lot of people saying this is intentional to "justify budgets" or "make more work for themselves." We are SO far behind in this country in maintaining out aging infrastructure and making badly needed extensions, widening, improvements, etc that we have no need whatsoever to make even more work.

      Sometimes crappy projects get built, but it's not because anybody in the process wanted that. No, it's just a combination of incompetence and the natural result of a lowest bidder system.

      Perfectly sensible post, which means it will be ignored by those who agree that any government is bad government.

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      08-08-2012 10:40 AM #64
      Hmm, there are 10 within a 20-mile radius of my house.
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      08-08-2012 10:43 AM #65
      US 1 & Piscataqua River

      Last Updated by tadmor on Jul 25



      Built: 1921
      National Bridge ID 2.17025E+13
      11,000 cars per day (avg.)

      11127

      Rockingham County, NH


      Pic link does not work..

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      08-08-2012 10:54 AM #66


      The current Tappan Zee Bridge must go. Every couple of weeks the NY Thurway department shuts down the bridge at 12AM or so to cut out failing concrete slabs to replace them. The current Governor is making a balls out effort to properly replace it, however lots of residents are raising every possible concern you can imagine.

      The only thing I wont like are the tolls when the new bridge is done.
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    32. Member maskedSONY's Avatar
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      08-08-2012 10:55 AM #67
      Quote Originally Posted by 09vdubgti View Post
      Pulaski Memorial Skyway
      Built: 1932
      National Bridge ID 704150
      65,000 cars per day (avg.)




      The bridges have been listed on the federal and state registers of historic places since 2005. Since being built they have been little altered; they have not been significantly repaired since 1984. In 2007, the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) began a rehabilitation program which it estimates will cost about $1 billion....

      I drive on this often, surprises me how it hasnt collapsed yet. Roads are ****ed, pieces of the railings are held on by nets/ropes...
      Of all bridges in NJ, that needs to be replaced. I'm still amazed its standing. But your jerk of a gov in NJ won't spend a dime on stuff like this.
      Quote Originally Posted by Turbiodiesel!
      It really is the perfect, no excuses all-rounder for the rich guy who's accustomed to having it all - the Hybrid version especially. It's like an F-150 Raptor banged an M5 in the men's room of a biker bar. Nobody really wanted the results, but damn - what a set of genes.

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      08-08-2012 10:59 AM #68
      Quote Originally Posted by maskedSONY View Post
      The current Tappan Zee Bridge must go. Every couple of weeks the NY Thurway department shuts down the bridge at 12AM or so to cut out failing concrete slabs to replace them. The current Governor is making a balls out effort to properly replace it, however lots of residents are raising every possible concern you can imagine.

      The only thing I wont like are the tolls when the new bridge is done.
      YA i heard they are going to be like $14.00 both ways? Crazy.

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    34. Senior Member Air and water do mix's Avatar
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      08-08-2012 11:04 AM #69
      Quote Originally Posted by maskedSONY View Post
      The only thing I wont like are the tolls when the new bridge is done.
      Yeah. There was a pretty big effort to get only one bridge here and use that as the new I-64 Bridge. The I-65 bridge is in the middle of a massive amount of ramps and exchanges, requiring anything done down there to completely change that mess. If they had simply put one new bridge in the east end (the I-64 bridge) and routed I-64 around southern Indiana as proposed, then the downtown bridge would have been less travelled, required no new ramps and the old downtown part of I-64 (that plugs up the waterfront) could have been leveled, opening up the west end of town to new businesses, beautifying the waterfront - a'la Portland Oregon - and costing a couple of billion less.

      Guess which way it went down, though. Of course it was the more expensive way, what did you expect? How are they paying for it? Tolls. They'll start in '17 and continue through 2055 or so.

      Edit: To "save costs" they narrowed the east end bridge to 4 lanes (it would've been 6) thereby removing any possibility of it being the primary route for I-64.
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      08-08-2012 11:07 AM #70
      There's a few near me but thankfully none I would drive on on a regular basis. Up by my moms there appears to be alot of country road bridges that are unsafe though. Not surprised by that though.
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