Fort Steuben Bridge
|Fort Steuben Bridge|
|Carries||2 lanes of vehicular traffic, 1 pedestrian sidewalk|
|Locale||Between Steubenville, Ohio, and Weirton, West Virginia|
|Owner||Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT)|
|Engineering design||The Dravo Contracting Company|
|Total length||1,584 ft 9 in (483.03 m)|
|Width||29 ft 3 in (8.92 m)|
|Longest span||688 ft 9 in (209.93 m)|
|Number of spans||7|
|Piers in water||6|
|Clearance below||41.3 ft (12.6 m) above high water|
|Collapsed||21 February 2012(demolished)|
The Fort Steuben Bridge was a suspension bridge which spanned the Ohio River from Steubenville, Ohio to Weirton, West Virginia completed in 1928, closed in 2009, and demolished on 21 February 2012.
Originally named the Weirton-Steubenville Bridge, construction of the bridge began in 1927 and was completed in 1928. Under the direction of the Dravo Contracting Company's Engineering Works Department, based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the project was referred to as the “Stanton Bridge over the Ohio River at Steubenville, Ohio.”
Use of the bridge
This Bridge was a link between Steubenville, Ohio, and Weirton, West Virginia, for just under 84 years. It served as the main carrier of U.S. Route 22 over the Ohio River and was frequented by trucks and heavy duty vehicles associated with the numerous steel and other industrial facilities located along the Ohio River, notably in the Weirton-Steubenville area.
The Veterans Memorial Bridge was opened to traffic on 1 May 1990, which led to the diversion of traffic that usually crossed the Fort Steuben Bridge. The purpose of this bridge was to lessen traffic on the aging structure of the old Fort Steuben Bridge, and the intended effect was seen immediately. The designers knew that there was increasing demand to cross the Ohio River on U.S. 22, and the option with which the designers went was a 6-laned, much larger structure as opposed to the aging, 2-lane, significantly smaller Fort Steuben Bridge.
Prior to the construction of the Fort Steuben Bridge, travelers had to use the Market Street Bridge, which connects downtown Steubenville and Weirton, to cross the Ohio River. The Fort Steuben Bridge provided a more direct route for the flow of traffic descending what is now University Boulevard in Steubenville.
Closing of the bridge
The Fort Steuben Bridge was closed to traffic on 15 January 2009; it had previously been weight-restricted in 2006 due to the weakening of the structure over time. The Ohio Department of Transportation deemed the bridge unfit for traffic after they had noticed a change in the road surface and immediately inspected the structural integrity of the bridge.
On 21 February 2012, the Fort Steuben Bridge was destroyed in a controlled demolition project. The explosions which brought the bridge crashing into the water could be seen in the early morning light, and the thunderous roar of the shockwave could be heard up and down the Ohio River. 153 pounds (69 kg) of explosives were used in 136 locations along the span, resulting in 20 blasts, each lasting only 0.35 seconds and occurring only nine milliseconds apart; cleanup ensued by River Salvage Co. of Pittsburgh.
- Wolfe, G. F. (21 June 1927). "Stanton Bridge over the Ohio River" (PDF, blueprints). The Dravo Contracting Company. Retrieved 21 February 2012.
- Shoemaker, E. F. (25 November 1927). "Stanton Bridge over the Ohio River" (PDF, blueprints). The Dravo Contracting Company. Retrieved 21 February 2012.
- Fort Steuben Bridge at Structurae. Retrieved on 21 February 2012.
- Scott, Warren (21 February 2012). "Blast topples Fort Steuben Bridge". Herald Star (Steubenville, Ohio). Retrieved 21 February 2012.
- Eachus, Josh (21 February 2012). "Fort Steuben Bridge imploded, cleanup under way". Steubenville, Ohio: WTOV-TV. Retrieved 21 February 2012.
- Jones, Robert Ralston (1929). The Ohio River: Charts, Drawings, and Description of Features Affecting Navigation : War Department Rules and Regulations for the River and Its Tributaries : Navigable Depths and Tables of Distances for Tributaries. p. 207.
- "A Veterans Memorial". Retrieved 27 February 2012.
- ""Fort Steuben Bridge Will Remain Closed" Traffic Advisory". ODOT.
- Scott, Warren (21 February 2012). "Blast topples Fort Steuben Bridge". Herald Star. Retrieved 20 March 2012.
- Fort Steuben Bridge Demolition on YouTube by user OhioTransportation, official account created by the Ohio Department of Transportation