|Bridge Name||Facility Carried / Feature Intersected||Location||Structure Type||Construction Date and Builder/Engineer|
Chatham Street Bridge
||Chatham Street Over Calumet Sag Channel||Blue Island: Cook County, Illinois||Metal 8 Panel Bolt-Connected Polygonal Warren Through Truss, Fixed and Approach Spans: Metal Stringer (Multi-Beam), Fixed||1964 By Builder/Contractor: Unknown|
|Main Span Length||Structure Length||Roadway Width||Main Spans||Approach Spans||NBI Number|
|303.8 Feet (92.6 Meters)||385 Feet (117.3 Meters)||30 Feet (9.1 Meters)||1||3||16662007678|
This bridge is one of two nearly identical bridges in Blue Island that are both deteriorated and closed to traffic. The reason for the deterioration appears to be caused by a nearly complete lack of maintenance, repair, and rehabilitation over the bridge's relatively short service life. From a historical perspective, the lack of maintenance is interesting since aside from the deterioration, the bridge appears as it was when first built. The original concrete deck remains, with only some minor patching for potholes. Original pedestrian railings remain, and typical of older truss bridges with sidewalks there are no railings between the truss lines and the vehicular roadway. Original stringer approach spans remain in place. Expansion joints also appear to be original. A bridge painted date is painted on the bridge as May 1965 which indicates the bridge has never been repainted since its initial painted. There also is no evidence of spot painting. It is this lack of even basic spot painting over the bridge's service life that most likely has led to the isolated areas of complete section loss on a number of vertical members. This bridge is thus an excellent unaltered example of a 1960s truss bridge as much as it is an excellent example of the value of basic maintenance such as spot painting, which would have been drastically cheaper than a rehabilitation would be, or even worse, a complete structure replacement.
In February 2012, the Blue Island Active Transportation Plan was published and it suggests converting this bridge for use by non-motorized traffic only. It would be part of a proposed Cal-Sag Trail. As the Transportation Plan shows in the below drawing, the converted bridge would retain sidewalks for pedestrians, create lanes for bicycles, and also add plants and other decorations to make the bridge perhaps a sort of over-water park. This proposal appears to be an excellent preservation solution for this bridge.
Main PlaqueCHATHAM STREET BRIDGE
BUILT 1964 BY
STATE OF ILLINOIS
C. H. ROUTE 259
SEC. 259 - 0404 - V, VB
LOADING H20 - S16
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