Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Cable Bridge

Cable Bridge, Tri-Cities WA
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A few photos of the Cable Bridge, which crosses the Columbia River between Kennewick & Pasco, Washington. It's a cable-stayed bridge, as the name suggests; it picked up the name because it was one of the first cable-stayed bridges in the United States, and it was kind of a novelty at the time. Many sources insist it was the first, but I was poking through a book on inspection & maintenance of cable-stayed bridges, and it points out that the Sitka Harbor Bridge in Alaska dates to 1971, making it a good 7 years older than the Cable Bridge.

Cable Bridge, Tri-Cities WA

I remember visiting my grandmother in Kennewick, not long after the bridge opened, and being amazed by it. I mean, I think I was amazed most of the time at that age, but still. I probably picked up on the local civic pride about the thing. The older Pasco-Kennewick Bridge sat right next to the Cable Bridge at the time, although it had been abandoned in place when the new bridge opened. My grandmother went on and on about how the new bridge was modern and forward-looking and something to be proud of, while the old bridge was an eyesore that needed to be torn out. That finally happened in 1990, after twelve years of legal battles.

Cable Bridge, Tri-Cities WA

This type of bridge still isn't common in the Northwest. Right now the only cable-stayed bridge I know of in Portland is the big skybridge at OHSU, and it'll remain the only one until the new TriMet MAX bridge opens in 2015.

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