Friday, September 12, 2008

...and the hawthorne bridge, finally...

hawthorne bridge, infrared

hawthorne bridge, infrared

So I figured that, for the sake of completeness, I had to cover the Hawthorne Bridge too. I initially wasn't going to, you know; I'd dismissed most of the downtown Portland bridges as "uninteresting" from a walking standpoint, and declared the bridge-moseying project complete. I've already declared Mission Accomplished at least twice now, and it doesn't seem to be helping.

hawthorne bridge, infrared

I figured I needed a gimmick if I was going to make the Hawthorne interesting. Just playing tourist and taking tourist photos wasn't going to cut it this time. So I figured, hey, what I'll do is put the infrared filter on the camera, walk across, take a few photos, and hit the Roots brewpub. After a bit of tasty sudsy refreshment, I'll switch filters and put the UV-pass one on instead, and walk back the other way. There's a nonzero possibility that nobody's ever done this before, but I could be wrong.

In case you find it hard to tell, everything above the HR tag (the horizontal bar) is infrared, and below it is ultraviolet.

hawthorne bridge, infrared

Incidentally, there were a couple of odd things I noticed around the east end of the bridge which I'd never paid attention to before. Or the east end of the approach viaduct to the bridge, which is not the same thing. There's a sign in the same unreadable dark-brass-on-dark-aggregate they used on the Morrison (hence no photo), telling us the bridge's East Approaches date back to just 1957, so they aren't really historic. When it's time to gentrify the area, we can tear them out with a clean conscience, like the city did with the Lovejoy Ramp some years back, and then we have room for shiny new condo towers. Hooray!

The other odd thing is how, at the very end of the east viaduct bit, pedestrians are shunted over a block to Clay St., and bikes get to stay on Hawthorne itself. Kind of strange, not the end of the world of course, and it actually puts you closer if you're heading to the Roots brewpub like I was. Just a strange little quirk is all.

willamette riverbank, hawthorne bridge

Oh, I almost forgot -- I guess I ought to do a links section here, in case readers want actual useful information about the bridge.
  • The bridge page at Structurae
  • And the equivalent Brigehunter page too.
  • Multnomah County's page about the bridge (because they own it, natch)
  • And here it is on PortlandBridges, too.
  • The Hawthorne has its own Flickr group. Not all Portland bridges have these; I imagine only the ones with fans do.
  • A post at Portland Architecture griping about the bridge, particularly the fact that they have to raise it a lot. Which is true, sure, it does open a lot, and yes, it can be mildly annoying at times, I guess.
  • Speaking of which, check out this cool time-lapse video of the bridge at night. It opens at one point, so you can see what that's like.
  • More cool video about operating the bridge.
  • And video of a typical morning rush hour on the Hawthorne. Look at all the bikes.
  • A Bojack post worrying that they might build condos at the west end of the bridge instead of the proposed courthouse. Which I'm sure is a distinct possibility, at least once the real estate market recovers.
  • A great mid-bridge panorama.
  • The bridge was renovated & repainted about a decade ago. The company that handled the work has a page describing the project.
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