It was built in 1875 to replace a burned 1852 wooden bridge and then rehabilitated in 1903. The wooden bridge was "the longest and highest wooden bridge in the United States." Plans are to replace the trestle with a steel arch bridge. NS offered to donate it to the State Park since a lot of people trespass on it now. But the state agency turned it down because they said they could not afford to preserve it. So NS plans to spend $1m to tear it down. So preservation costs more than $1m?
|Existing from NYDOT|
|Proposed from NYDOT|
Construction activity for its replacement has already started appearing in satellite images.
|Test Train, photo taken on July 31, 1875, from Bridge Hunter|
|HAER NY,61-PORT,1--2 from Photos from HAER NY,61-PORT,1-|
|Modjeski and Masters photo from ConstructionEquipmentGuide from posting|
7/2017 - The two halves of the new Portageville Bridge on the NS Southern Tier Line were joined this week. The new bridge will replace the 1875 trestle and is expected to open next year.
Read more: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portage_Viaduct
Sean Angelo NS wanted to replace that bridge for a while, as it was getting tired. Plus, there was a 10mph on that bridge, which was a dispatching nightmare. The new bridge should be able to allow speeds of 30mph, helping to keep the trains moving through the southern tier.AltoonaWorks Sean Angelo The few trains there are, anyway.Sean Angelo 8 trains a day I've been told.
Construction of the new Portageville Bridge on Norfolk Southern’s Southern Tier rail line in New York reached a milestone over the weekend. Bridge builders installed the last piece of structural steel to connect the arch span. Iron workers attached a pine tree on the steel frame, a tradition that signifies there were no fatalities during this phase of construction.Ken Gentzke Jr The new bridge would allow NS to pull 286,000 lbs max cars over this bridge. Currently they are only able to pull cars around 240,000 lbs max cars. Can't remember the exact amount. These heavier cars went for longer routes.
The $70-million railroad bridge, which spans the Genesee River Gorge in Letchworth State Park near Castile, N.Y., is a public-private partnership among Norfolk Southern, the New York State Department of Transportation, and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation.
Norfolk Southern hopes to begin running trains on the bridge by the end of this year. The bridge will enable the railroad to better serve customers in Buffalo and the state’s Southern Tier region, supporting businesses, job creation, and economic growth.
Joe Stoltz Actually I think the new bridge will handle 315,000 pounds at a speed of 35 mph vs a substantially lower weight rating and 10 mph speed limit it now has.
A video of a train crossing it. (source)