|Bridge Name||Facility Carried / Feature Intersected||Location||Structure Type||Construction Date and Builder/Engineer|
Hojack Swing Bridge
||Railroad (CSX) Over Genesee River||Rochester: Monroe County, New York||Metal Rivet-Connected Baltimore Through Truss, Movable: Swing||1905 By Builder/Contractor: King Bridge Company of Cleveland, Ohio|
|Main Span Length||Main Spans|
|304 Feet (92.6 Meters)||1|
This bridge is an impressive railroad swing bridge. It is noteworthy as one of the few known surviving swing bridges associated with the noteworthy and prolific King Bridge Company. It was built in 1905 to serve the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad and most recently served CSX Railroad.
This is a railroad bridge that has been abandoned in its open position since 1994. This bridge is slated for demolition, largely thanks to the U.S. Coast Guard which has demanded the demolition of this bridge for years, without giving fair consideration to the historic value of the bridge and community support for preserving the bridge. For years, preservationists have fought to keep this bridge standing, and avoid demolition. The bridge is not in the way of any replacement structure. It is not in danger of collapse, and in fact the Section 106 process revealed that the bridge was in "excellent" condition.
The U.S. Coast guard has a dysfunctional and wasteful policy that states that the Coast Guard will seek the demolition of any bridge over waterways it has jurisdiction over if said bridge is not "functioning as a bridge" which essentially includes abandoned bridges. This policy is dysfunctional and wasteful because it does not take into account the value of historic bridges, even those historic bridges not open to traffic. There is value and purpose to leaving such bridges standing. The Coast Guard claims that the bridge is an obstruction to navigation. However, this bridge has been standing for over a century. If it truly were an obstruction it would have been replaced long ago. There have been no recent changes in size or quantity of boats on this waterway. In fact, the bridge may serve to calm the speed of recreational craft roaring into the river off of the Lake.
Another issue supposedly hindering preservation was the possible presence of asbestos on the bridge. Such materials would be isolated, and confined to things like the bridge tender house. These items could be removed from the bridge. The metal trusses themselves, the historically significant part of the bridge, are made of steel, not asbestos. Also, asbestos would have to be abated during demolition anyway, so this is no more a barrier to preservation than to demolition.
The story of this bridge could have been improved if the bridge were relocated to a new location, even if set on land as a non-functional exhibit. This would remove the bridge from the water, eliminating the perceived navigational obstruction, while also preserving the historically significant trusses. Perhaps moved onto land as a non-functional exhibit might even be nicer, since people could walk up to the bridge and see it up close. However, the current plan failed to even save the bridge in this manner. The shortsighted and wasteful decision of demolition will reduce this historic bridge "in excellent condition" to nothing more than a pile of scrap metal.
Click on a thumbnail or gallery name below to visit that particular photo gallery. If videos are available, click on a video name to view and/or download that particular video.
Original / Full Size Photos
|A collection of overview and detail photos. For the best visual immersion and full detail, or for use as a desktop background, this gallery presents the photos for this bridge in the original digital camera resolution.|
Mobile Optimized Gallery
|A collection of overview and detail photos. View the photos for this bridge in a reduced size which is useful for mobile/smartphone users, modem
(dial-up) users, or those who do not wish to wait for the longer
download times of the full-size photos. Alternatively, view this photo gallery using a popup slideshow viewer (great for mobile users) by clicking the link below.
Browse Gallery With Popup Viewer
© Copyright 2003-2014, HistoricBridges.org. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer: HistoricBridges.org is a volunteer group of private citizens. HistoricBridges.org is NOT a government agency, does not represent or work with any governmental agencies, nor is it in any way associated with any government agency or any non-profit organization. While we strive for accuracy in our factual content, HistoricBridges.org offers no guarantee of accuracy. Information is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied. Information could include technical inaccuracies or errors of omission. Opinions and commentary are the opinions of the respective HistoricBridges.org member who made them and do not necessarily represent the views of anyone else, including any outside photographers whose images may appear on the page in which the commentary appears. HistoricBridges.org does not bear any responsibility for any consequences resulting from the use of this or any other HistoricBridges.org information. Owners and users of bridges have the responsibility of correctly following all applicable laws, rules, and regulations, regardless of any HistoricBridges.org information.