Park Life: Where Bridges Go to Retire

This article partially answers the question: what happens to old bridges when they no longer have the strength to carry modern traffic, or their owners no longer have the funds to keep them safe? The Calhoun County Historic Bridge Park in Michigan is the only 'bridge retirement home, in the United States, possibly in the world. The park was initiated in 1996 by the Calhoun County Road Commissioner Dennis Randolph at the time the county parks were turned over to the road commission. The parks were not attracting visitors, and Mr. Randolph came up with the idea that one of the parks could become the home for derelict historic bridges. The project has been funded by the Federal Highway Administration transportation enhanced dollars through the Michigan Department of Transportation (DOT) with matching county funds. The state DOT regards the park as a research function, and has granted the county permission to carry out in house restoration. Completion of restoration work on the fourth bridge in the historic bridge park marks close to a decade of work in this unique facility.


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  • Accession Number: 01006595
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 19 2005 4:27PM