Sunday, October 29, 2017

Mendocino County, California Bridges: Highway 1 Bridge across the Noyo River

September 2017 (39.42694-123.80667) Noyo River Bridge
Continuing north on Highway 1 we arrived at the Noyo River Bridge (10 0298). This is a three span continuous, prestressed concrete box girder bridge. It has a 325 ft long main span and it was built in 2005. It's an odd looking bridge with columns that are recessed below the soffit to imitate a bridge on bearings. The columns have a stout shape with extra concrete that (hopefully) will spall off to allow the ductile core to undergo large displacements without breaking during an earthquake.
There was a fight between Caltrans and the community about various aspects of the proposed design of the bridge.  The bridge was to be located extremely close to commercial buildings along the bank and it doesn't look like a typical coastal bridge. One resident, Vince Taylor, fought Caltrans on the solid barrier rail that was originally proposed for the bridge. He provides a history of his hard-fought victory on the internet.
Tony Phillips provides an excellent pictorial history of the six different bridges that crossed the Noyo River near its mouth during the last 150 years. The first structure was a drawbridge that was built in 1861. Subsequent bridges were truss bridges until the current haunched box girder bridge was built.
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