Talmadge Memorial Bridge

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Talmadge Memorial Bridge
Talmadge Bridge.jpg
Coordinates 32°5′20.67″N 81°5′55.68″W / 32.0890750°N 81.0988000°W / 32.0890750; -81.0988000
Carries US 17 / SR 404 Spur
Crosses Savannah River
Locale Savannah, Georgia
Official name Eugene Talmadge Memorial Bridge
Maintained by Georgia Department of Transportation
Design cable-stayed bridge
Total length 1.9 miles (3.06 km)
Longest span 1,100 feet (335 m)
Clearance below 185 feet
Opened November 1991

The Talmadge Memorial Bridge is a bridge in the United States spanning the Savannah River between downtown Savannah, Georgia, and Hutchinson Island. It carries US 17/SR 404 Spur.


Completed in March 1991, the new Talmadge Memorial cable-stayed bridge replaced the old Talmadge cantilever truss bridge (built in 1953), which had become a danger for large ships entering the Port of Savannah, home to the largest single ocean container terminal on the U.S. eastern seaboard, and the nation's fourth-busiest seaport.

Tribute to Eugene Talmadge[edit]

The structure is dedicated to Eugene Talmadge, who served as the Democratic Governor of Georgia in 1933-37 and 1941-43.

Shipping under the Eugene Talmadge Memorial Bridge in Savannah, Georgia

The new bridge was originally named for the Native American Creek leader Tomochichi, an important figure in Savannah's founding in 1733. After public forums on the issue, the original name was restored for the new structure. Many of the piers (vertical supports) of the original Talmadge bridge still stand and can be seen in the photo on the left.


A ship passing under the bridge.

The new bridge provides 185 feet (56 m) of vertical navigational clearance for oceangoing vessels. Its horizontal clearance is 1,023 feet (312 m), with both main piers located on the north and south banks of the Savannah River. With a main span of 1,100 feet (340 m) and a total length of 1.9 miles (3.1 km), the new Talmadge Memorial carries four lanes of traffic.[1] The north end of the bridge ends on Hutchinson Island, an island situated between the Savannah River and the Back River. A separate, older, two-lane bridge spans Back River, connecting Hutchinson Island with Jasper County, South Carolina.

Comparison with Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge and the Sidney Lanier Bridge[edit]

Tugboat in front of the bridge

The proximity and rivalry between Charleston, South Carolina and Savannah and Brunswick often lead to comparisons between the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge, the Sidney Lanier Bridge, and the Talmadge Memorial Bridge, all of which carry US 17. Completed in 2005, the clearance under the Arthur Ravenel, Jr., Bridge is actually only 1 foot (0.30 m) taller than both the Sidney Lanier Bridge and the Talmadge Memorial Bridge. Unlike the Sidney Lanier Bridge and the Talmadge Memorial Bridge, however, the Ravenel Bridge has eight travel lanes; the Talmadge and the Sidney Lanier both have just four lanes. The Ravenel also features a dedicated bike/pedestrian lane.

As for the span of the three bridges, The Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge is 1,546 feet (471 m). The Sidney Lanier Bridge is 1,250 feet (380 m). The Talmadge Memorial Bridge is 1,100 feet (340 m).

As for the total length of the three bridges, the Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge is 13,200 feet (4.0 km). The Sidney Lanier Bridge is 7,779 feet (2,371 m). The Talmadge Memorial Bridge is 10,032 feet (3.058 km), or 1.9 miles (3.1 km).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Eugene Talmadge Bridge, Georgia @ SouthEastRoads.com - U.S. Highway 17

External links[edit]