What Is the Fort Pitt Bridge?


Quick Answer

The Fort Pitt Bridge is a steel double-decker bowstring arch bridge in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, that crosses the Monongahela River. Built in 1959, the bridge connects the point of Pittsburgh with the Fort Pitt Tunnel. The bridge's design features a non-trussed arch. Its main span is 750 feet, and the entire bridge is 1,207 feet long. The bridge features four approach spans that connect into one main span.

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Full Answer

The Fort Pitt Bridge replaced the Point Bridge at a time when Pittsburgh was experiencing an urban renewal. The bridge has a twin sister bridge, the Fort Duquesne Bridge, which connects the point of Pittsburgh to the city's North Side district and crosses the Allegheny River.

The design firm Richardson, Gordon, and Associates designed the bridge, and the American Bridge Company of New York, New York, handled all construction, with George S. Richardson serving as the engineer. The firm used a computer to design the bridge, making it the first bowstring bridge to hold that distinction. To support the decks, the bridge designers implemented a Warren truss structure. The bridge cost $6.305 million to build and opened on June 19, 1959, at 11 a.m. The most recent rehabilitation effort on the bridge took place in 2003.

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