Saturday, February 11, 2012

Building Bridges (Again!)

During this past week, the Avon Road bridge at the Livernois intersection was closed to traffic so that replacement of the decaying structure could begin.  Those of us who live in the area have known this closure was coming for a long time, and we'll be taking creative routes around the construction until some time in June. A couple of years ago, we had a similar experience with the bridge over Stoney Creek on East Tienken Road.

How many readers remember the biggest bridge closure of our recent history?  It happened 23 years ago, when the South Hill bridge at the foot of Main Street in downtown Rochester was closed for replacement.  That project was precipitated by an earlier collapse of the bridge deck that occurred when a support strap failed. Emergency repairs were made, and then engineers determined that then entire bridge needed an overhaul.  Downtown Rochester suffered through the long months of road closure in 1989-1990, and celebrated the reopening of the span with a "Bridge Bash" in October 1990.  Then-governor James Blanchard cut the ribbon to open the roadway, and a parade of vintage automobiles made the first trip across the new bridge.

These photos of the South Hill bridge project and "Bridge Bash" festivities were taken by my dad in 1989 and 1990.

No comments:

Post a Comment