Saturday, November 16, 2013

A Tale Of Three Bridges

 Today is a long awaited day for me and my fellow 
Hastings, Minnesota residents!
Since our town sits on the banks of the  Mississippi River, we are home to a bridge that takes us across the  "Mighty Mississip." So why is this a long awaited day? Hold on, I'll get there, but first a little history.

Hastings' first bridge was the Spiral Bridge, built in 1895. Since the Spiral Bridge was built for horse traffic, it was very narrow. This bridge served the community well for many years, but towards the end of its lifespan it was rusted and could only support a 4-ton load. School buses filled with children were too heavy to make the trip, so the children had to walk across the bridge while the driver drove the empty bus across.

In 1951 the Spiral Bridge was replaced by a two-lane  steel bridge. Showing wear and tear, it had been scheduled to be torn down and replaced with a new bridge in the year 2019, but after the I-35W bridge collapse in Minneapolis, Minnesota, it was re-prioritized and construction started in 2010.

Last year I blogged about a milestone in the construction of Hastings' newest bridge. If you click here you can watch the video of our new bridge being moved into place. 

Which brings us to today, a long awaited day for me and my fellow Hastings, Minnesota residents. After 3 years of driving through bridge construction, waiting in long lines, and contending with some drivers who were not always "Minnesota nice," our new, 4-lane bridge is open for business!

I feel blessed to live in a beautiful part of the country, 
complete with a beautiful bridge!

Thanks to Dave Youngren for the current photos. 
To see more, visit Hastings Bridge Watch

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