Tuesday, March 26, 2019

IL-104 Bridges over Illinois River at Merdosia, IL

(1936 Bridge Hunter; 2018 Bridge Hunter; Historic Bridges; John A. Weeks III; Satellite)

While researching a Wabash Railroad bridge, I discovered that I have missed an opportunity to photograph a cantilever-looking truss bridge. (According to Historic Bridges, it is a continuous truss bridge.) It has been replaced with a tied-arch bridge.

John Weeks III
An IDOT video of the truss bridge that also shows several coal barges docked at the coal plant. I don't know the date of the video, but the generating station was burning coal instead of natural gas as of that date.

Bridge Hunter
Street View, old
Street View, new
HalversonConstruction-20
Note that the concrete deck has been removed from the old bridge so that only steel will fall into the river when they blow it up.
HalversonConstruction-85
They built the arch over the river using falsework rather than building it on the side of the river and then floating it into position.
HalversonConstruction-38

HalversonConstruction-57
HalversonConstruction-35
HalversonConstruction-43

Video of "energetic felling" of the town side approach span starting at 0:37

(new window)


Since the satellite views will be changing, I grabbed some images. In 2010, IDOT was still debating about building the bridge south of the town with a bypass for IL-104 around the town or keeping the highway in town. Obviously, they decided to keep IL-104 in the town. According to Google Earth, these images are from Aug, 2015.
Satellite
They have bought properties and demolished the buildings to make room for the new right-of-way to the new bridge.
Satellite
Google Earth, Jul 2012

Satellite
They have erected a crane (upper-right corner) that is ready to walk across the access road when it is done. And they have driven the piles for a cofferdam near the bottom of the photo.

The city of Meredosia is famous as being one of the first cities in the United States to have a railroad line. The Northern Cross line started in 1838, and was one of the first 3 operating steam railroads in the US. There is a depot and caboose preserved as part of a small museum a few blocks south of IL-104. [John Weeks]

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