Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Something Never Seen In Texas On A Bridge Built In 21 Months

Continuing on with our popular series of  bloggings  about things I see via west coast news sources which is not something we would likely be seeing as a news event at my location in Texas.

This blogging is also continuing with our popular series of bloggings about construction projects, mostly bridges, built in a time span of less than four years.

What you see here I saw on Facebook this morning. A posting by KING 5 TV. KING 5 is the Seattle NBC affiliate.

The bridge you are looking at here is St. John's Bridge, spanning the Williamette River in Portland, Oregon.

This bridge is in the news today due to that which you see dangling from the bridge deck.


Protesters blocking a Shell Oil support ship trying to float to the Arctic where Shell is planning to poke holes in the seabed so as to extract oil. A lot of people do not think this to be a good idea, hence the protesting.

Construction on St. John's Bridge began one month before the Stock Market Crash of 1929 began the Great Depression. The bridge was completed 21 months later, on May 12, 1931.

At the dedication of the bridge, bridge engineer, David B. Steirman made a very Fort Worthy braggadocio type statement, saying...

"A challenge and an opportunity to create a structure of enduring beauty in the God-given wondrous background was offered us when were asked to design the bridge. It is the most beautiful bridge in the world we feel.”

If America's Biggest Boondoggle's three bridges being built over dry land, currently with a four year project timeline, actually get built, I can imagine J.D. Granger, or his mama, or someone else opining that the bridges are the most beautiful bridges in the world.

However, at the time St. John's Bridge was dedicated it may have been the most beautiful bridge in the world. The superlatives which describe St. John's Bridge at the time of its completion are certainly of a sort one will never hear about Fort Worth's simple little bridges, built over dry land, connecting the mainland to an  imaginary island. In four years.

While St. John's Bridge, in 1931 had....
  • the highest clearance in the nation,
  • the longest prefabricated steel cable rope strands,
  • the tallest steel frame piers of reinforced concrete,
  • the first application of aviation clearance lights to the towers, and
  • the longest suspension span west of Detroit, Michigan.

I wonder if there will be sufficient clearance under America's Biggest Boondoggle's bridges for protesters protesting something being shipped in the Trinty River to dangle and block passage?

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