18 January 2013

History Being Made: A Visit to Portland's Sellwood Bridge

Ah, it's late and I am typing this by candlelight so I'll hurry and
 hope I don't make too many errors in the process
(also some fresh blueberries and crab await me-another reason to hurry).
Today was a glorious day--sunny, blue skies, temperature above 32 degrees,
and I had, as usual, been doing some browsing on the Internet when I became intrigued
at what I found there.
A field trip was certainly needed, and off a friend and I went in search of history
(some of it in our past and some of it being made now).
*insert fresh crab and blueberry break here as I couldn't wait...
Definitely on my trip itinerary was a stop to see one of Portland's old bridges that is being replaced.
Now, this bridge and I have a love-hate relationship.
I HATE going over it,
and I love it when I am safely OFF it
(just ask my dear daughter-in-law).
Alas---two other Portland bridges have this same effect on me,
as does the lovely Tacoma Narrows bridge in Washington state.
But we won't talk about that right now...
Now as much as I DO hate this bridge,
it IS part of Portland's history (built 1925) and it is being MOVED...
to become a temporary bridge while a new, much wider bridge is being built
where the old one is right now.
I felt that this kind of history called for a personal goodbye and visit from me, so off we went.
They had closed the bridge at 0500 and were hard at work on it,
separating the main part of the bridge from the west and east accesses to it;
Saturday they will move the truss over and onto the temporary supports.
BTW this is a photo of the Willamette River...
the river that divides the City of Roses.
This photo is taken from west Portland.
On the other side, in SE Portland, is the Sellwood District and
an awesome historical amusement park with a great historical roller skating rink
(love, love, love it there!)
Last time I was over this bridge,
with my dear DIL and tease of a hubby,
I told them it wasn't safe...
today I sent her and my dear daughter a photo to prove my point.
I know, you all agree with me:)
Smartphones can be so handy at times, especially when you 'need' to prove a point.
Although this isn't the best photo
(taken while we driving)
I think you can see the new, temporary supports for the bridge.
I think...
1100 feet of bridge truss being moved...
THIS Saturday.
I'd SO love to see it in person,
but this Saturday we're working on a little project of our own...
I guess I'll have to content myself with the fact that I was there on the first day of the bridge's closure
and catch a glimpse of the time lapse video they'll post here the day after the move

**Correction: the above site has a lot of information about the bridge, the move, etc...
but this link will bring you to the actual daily time lapse video:
Next up---a trip to the OK Corral and Wild, Wild West...sort of:)
How was your day?
Photos taken January 17, 2013


by Teresa said...

We've been watching the new on this bridge project and find it amazing... thanks for showing photos.
((hugs)), Teresa :-)

aimee said...

I have been fascinated by it too. It was great fun to see the project close up :-)
Blessings, Aimee

Linda W. said...

Yep - it's pretty cool isn't it? I'm a nerdy civil engineer, so I'm all over this! One of my co-workers is assigned to this project and I'm jealous! However, I did have a small part in the preliminary engineering phase of the new light rail bridge. :) Thanks for the great post on this subject.

Grayseasailor said...

What they are doing to the Sellwood is fascinating, and hard for me to imagine even when I see the pictures.
My husband and I used to drive over it going to and from the VA hospital and I loved to go that way because I enjoyed the views from the bridge and we passed a great yarn store [it is closed now :(
Thanks for posting the pictures and links, Aimee!

aimee said...

Hi, Gracie + Linda!
Linda-that is SO cool. I didn't realize you were an engineer :-) Bridges fascinate me ...even though some of them scare me! Lucky friend of yours.
Gracie-me too! I can hardly wait to get home later today and watch the time lapse video (am at my sibs watching my dad while they are out of town so am without a laptop).
Blessings, Aimee

Grandma Becky said...

It's been a few years since I've been on the Sellwood bridge. I don't like it either. Tacoma Narrows bridge is scary! Been there done that a few times. Light rail is going across the Sellwood to Ore. City, that's why they are widening it...even tho people didn't want it there. Sigh! Progress...bleah..sometimes, huh? Ok, bye!

aimee said...

Hi, Becky
Yes, I have a feeling we weren't the only ones who didn't like the Sellwood Bridge. The thing I hated the most was the narrowness of the lanes...I felt that I could almost reach out my passenger window and touch the rail (yikes!).
The way I get across the Tacoma Narrows is to take photos all the way across--obviously I am not driving at the same time:)
I have mixed feelings about progress; some changes I like and other changes not so much.

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