Sunday, March 18, 2012

Steel Bridge over the Willamette River, altered with Picnik

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Westbound traffic lane and a vehicle, plus MAX tracks and a westbound MAX train emerging from the Steel Bridge; eastbound MAX train, and the Steel Bridge. Thanks to Flickr contact drburtoni for suggesting that I take the altered image you see below and make it black and white.

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I took the original photo on October 8, 2011. This one is altered with the Picnik special effect HDR-ish.

From the Internet:

The Steel Bridge is a through truss, double lift bridge across the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon, United States. Its lower deck carries railroad and bicycle/pedestrian traffic, while the upper deck carries road traffic (on the Pacific Highway West No. 1W, former Oregon Route 99W) and light rail (MAX), making the bridge one of the most multimodal in the world. It is the only double-deck bridge with independent lifts in the world and the second oldest vertical-lift bridge in North America, after the nearby Hawthorne Bridge. The bridge links the Rose Quarter and Lloyd District in the east to Old Town Chinatown neighborhood in the west.

The bridge was completed in 1912 and replaced the Steel Bridge that was built in 1888 as a double-deck swing-span bridge. The 1888 structure was the first railroad bridge across the Willamette River in Portland. Its name originated because steel, instead of wrought iron, was used in its construction, very unusual for the time. When the current Steel Bridge opened, it was simply given its predecessor's name.

The structure was built by Union Pacific Railroad and the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company at a cost of $1.7 million. It opened in July 1912 to rail traffic and on August 9, 1912 to automobiles. In 1950, the Steel Bridge became an important part of a new U.S. 99W highway between Harbor Drive and Interstate Avenue. Harbor Drive was removed in 1974 and replaced with Tom McCall Waterfront Park.

Between 1984 and 1986 the bridge underwent a $10 million rehabilitation, including construction of the MAX light rail line.
In 2001, a 220-foot (67 m) long and 8-foot (2.4 m) wide cantilevered walkway was installed on the southern side of the bridge's lower deck as part of the Eastbank Esplanade construction, raising to three the number of publicly accessible walkways across the bridge, including the two narrow sidewalks on the upper deck. The bridge is owned by Union Pacific with the upper deck leased to Oregon Department of Transportation, and subleased to TriMet, while the City of Portland is responsible for the approaches.
The upper deck was closed again for summer 2008 for maintenance and to allow a junction to be built at the west end for the MAX Green Line. The lower deck of the bridge was threatened by major floods in 1948, 1964, and 1996.

The lift span of the bridge is 211-foot (64 m) long. At low river levels the lower deck is 26 feet (7.9 m) above the water, and 163 feet (50 m) of vertical clearance is provided when both are raised. Because of the independent lifts, the lower deck can be raised to 72 feet (22 m), telescoping into the upper deck but not disturbing it. Each deck has it own counterweights, two for the upper and eight for the lower, totaling 9,000,000 lb (4,100 metric tons).

The machinery house is above the upper-deck lift span with an operator's room suspended below the house so that the operator can view river traffic as well as the upper deck. The average daily traffic in 2000 was 23,100 vehicles (including many TriMet bus lines), 200 MAX trains, 40 freight and Amtrak trains, and 500 bicycles. The construction of the lower-deck walkway connected to the Eastbank Esplanade resulted in a sharp increase in bicycle traffic, with over 2,100 daily bicycle crossings in 2005.

Great technical diagrams at this link, as well as photos.

5 comments:

Randy said...

Love that first shot. Happy Sunday.

CTBruce said...

I really like the high contrast B&W shot you converted.

Lesley said...

The mechanics of this bridge astound me.
I like the pop of red on the LRT in the second photo.

Jack said...

I never use special effects like this, and rarely convert a photo to black and white, but this photo seems to beg for the treatment you gave it. Good job.

Louis la Vache said...

Several days late («Louis» works all weekend...), «Louis» thanks you for this fine contribution to Sunday Bridges and hopes you will continue to contribute!