Monday, May 22, 2017

NS/Pennsy Bridge over Ohio River in Pittsburgh, PA

(1915 Bridge Hunter, 1890 Bridge HunterHistoric Bridges)

This is known as the Ohio Connecting Railroad Bridge or the Brunot Island Railroad Bridge.

I learned that this bridge is 70' above the water because somehow a woman drove her SUV onto the bridge and then fell to her death when the vehicle landed upside down in 20 feet of water. But her dog and cat survived. [post-gazette] I studied the satellite images and could not find a grade crossing of the rails in the vicinity. No wonder the police were "mystified."

3D Satellite

Street View, 416' back channel span
Please follow the above Historic Bridges link to read how they used the material in the 416' foot span to cantilever the 525' main channel span during its construction to keep the shipping channel open. The piers were built wide enough for a double track because it was expected that the single-track through trusses would eventually be replaced by double-track trusses.

The Bridge Hunter page for the 1915 bridge shows the main span being floated into place. This contradicts the cantilevered construction technique described in Historic Bridges. So I paged through the eBook trying to find the picture. It turns out the picture on the 1915 Bridge Hunter webpage is wrong, but the picture being on the 1890 webpage is correct. This is how the initial single-track span was built along the shore and then floated in place.
eBook, p 634
Left Half of p634

Right Half of p634

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1 comment:

  1. I got curious about whether there was railroad service to the island's power station. There was—an article alludes to "railroad tracks" and historic maps show sidings on the island. So how did railroad cars get down from the 70-foot-high bridge?

    Turns out there was an elevated siding, connected to a railroad car elevator. Scroll down for images:

    http://www.smarttinc.com/content/newsletter-december-2012

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