Regency Bridge

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Regency Suspension Bridge
Regency Bridge Side View.JPG
Side view of Regency Bridge from November 22, 2005.
Regency Bridge is located in Texas
Regency Bridge
Nearest city San Saba, Texas
Coordinates 31°24′37″N 98°50′45″W / 31.41028°N 98.84583°W / 31.41028; -98.84583Coordinates: 31°24′37″N 98°50′45″W / 31.41028°N 98.84583°W / 31.41028; -98.84583
Area less than one acre
Built 1939
Architect Austin Bridge Co.
Governing body Private
NRHP Reference # 76002052[1]
Added to NRHP December 12, 1976

The Regency Bridge, locally known as the "Swinging Bridge," is a one-lane suspension bridge over the Colorado River in Texas. It is located at the intersection of Mills County Road 433 and San Saba County Road 137, both gravel roads, near a small community called Regency. The bridge saddles the Colorado River between Mills and San Saba counties.

History[edit]

The bridge was closed again on 8/19/2014 for repairs and is expected to be closed to traffic until early 2015.[2]

The bridge has a span of 325 feet (99 m) and a wood surface. It was built in 1939, with most of the work being done by hand. The bridge was restored in 1997, with then-Governor Bush attending the re-dedication service. This was a major event for the community of around 25 people.

Local teenagers accidentally set the wood surface on fire on December 29, 2003, burning a hole in some planks and causing $20,000 in damage.[3] The bridge was repaired and reopened to traffic in early 2005.[4]

In 2005, the Regency Bridge became the last suspension bridge in Texas open to automobile traffic.[4]

Commemoration[edit]

A nearby historical marker, located on the southeast side of the intersection of FM 574 and Mills County Road 433 (which is just east of the intersection of FM 45 and FM 574) reads:

This area's first Colorado River bridge was at Regency, on Mills-San Saba County line. Built 1903, it served ranchers and farmers for going to market, but fell in 1924, killing a boy, a horse, and some cattle. Its successor was demolished by a 1936 flood. With 90 per cent of the work done by hand labor, the Regency Suspension Bridge was erected in 1939. It became the pride of the locality, and youths gathered there in the 1940s to picnic, dance, and sing. Bypassed by paved farm roads, it now (1976) survives as one of the last suspension bridges in Texas.[5]

In popular culture[edit]

  • The bridge is included in the opening credits for Texas Country Reporter.[3]
  • In 2005, Alton and Sue Watson founded the There's Something In The Water Songwriter Festival featuring musicians and songwriters from Texas, Oklahoma, and other regions. The annual festival is held on the third weekend in April on a site next to the bridge.[6]
  • World Without Waves was filmed in the area and featured the Regency bridge in several scenes. [7]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13. 
  2. ^ "Current TxDOT Projects: Mills County". 
  3. ^ a b McLeod, Gerald E. (March 5, 2004). "Day Trips: A bridge to the past". The Austin Chronicle (Austin, TX). Retrieved April 11, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b McLeod, Gerald E. (November 11, 2005). "Day Trips: Earlier this year the Regency Bridge north of San Saba became the last suspension bridge in Texas that cars can drive across". The Austin Chronicle (Austin, TX). Retrieved April 11, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Regency Suspension Bridge". Texas Historic Sites Atlas. Texas Historical Commission. Retrieved April 11, 2014. 
  6. ^ "About Us". Official There's Something In The Water Songwriter Festival. Retrieved April 11, 2014. 
  7. ^ "IMDB.COM World Without Waves". imd.com. 

External links[edit]