One of my first memories of Baltimore County involves travelling over this bridge and its sister bridge on Warren Rd. You might be able to see from this picture that the bridge deck is composed entirely of diamond pattern steel griding, which while enabling road dirt, water, and whatever else to flow down without the use of gutters, makes a distinct low pitch grrrrrr noise as you drive over it. This early memory, which I am still talking about, involves a discussion between my mother and everyone else in the car over weather driving over this bridge makes you feel like the car is slipping. The bridge, as you can tell, has been replaced by a new bridge, which supposedly requires no paint at all! You can see it to the right.
Having been replaced, the bridge is still standing, but unused. Apparently they made a decision (I don’t know who “they” are) to maintain the bridge as a landmark. This is why it is sporting a new coat of paint in the picture.
They have also placed little information placards on the sides of the bridge, which is why I can tell you that it is actually modeled after (You didn’t think I’d go a week without a train reference, did you?) the Hell’s Gate bridge in New York City. Those who know that bridge, know it is one of the most iconic railroad bridges in the World.
Some more fun trivia about the bridge that I’ve learned from the placard: Those lanterns on the top are purely decorative and have never functioned. Most shocking to me, plainly obvious from this picture, but tremendously difficult to see when racing over the bridge at 40 MPH, is the fact that the Seal of the City of Baltimore is right there in the middle of the bridge.
This bridge crosses the gunpowder falls, just north of the area that is considered to be Loch Raven Reservoir. Another interesting piece of trivia from this area, is that it was home to the first bridge to cross the gunpowder falls. That bridge was burned by confederate soldiers in an attempt to cut off the Capital from the rest of the Union.