Honoring the old bridge
There are times where the old must make way for the new. The Sellwood Bridge was an elegant old bridge and an old friend that I crossed by car, bike and on foot. For the latter, there was a very tight sidewalk on one side that barely allowed people to pass each other, while the cars whizzed by in the narrow lanes. You did get a wonderful view up and down the river. Underneath the bridge, I use to fish off of the dock where the River Queen was originally docked before it was relocated downtown. More recently, we would walk along Powers Park or put in a canoe or kayak at ramp near Staff Jennings. However, the bridge ranked a safety rating of 2 (out of 100), so no amount of fixing was going to help.
The new bridge will be wider and allow pedestrians and bikes to cross with ample room. It will also be one of two bridges that are currently being built across the Willamette built to current seismic standards, and thus insure some level of service across the river after a major earthquake. The other bridge being built is for the Max line further downstream.
Rather than unceremoniously taking the bridge down, a major portion of the span is being used as a temporary bridge while the new bridge is being built. To do this, they moved a major portion of the bridge over to temporary supports. We took a bit of time on Saturday to watch them make the move. Needless to say, you could blink all you wanted as they moved it inches at time. But slowly and surely, you could make out progress. There was a nice crowd gathered under the bridge in the very cold but sunny weather. Enjoy this time lapse photography of the move. We will get enjoy the old bridge a bit more, and then welcome in the new bridge which I trust will become as beloved as the old bridge over time.