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The Tacoma Narrows Bridge Funsite Local Bridges

Local Tacoma Bridges

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This section features some other local bridges in the Tacoma, Washington area. These are grouped below by each bridge, with all available material shown for each one. You will see the bridge heading, followed by photos, information, collectibles, and blueprints (for some) on that bridge. Just scan thru the page to find the bridge you are interested in, and if you'd like to see something that is not shown, just email us with the Send a Message button above.



North 21st Street Bridge

This bridge crosses the Buckley Gulch between Oakes & Fife streets- a site that had been a source of fun for kids in the past who swung out and underneath it on ropes hung from the adjacent trees. The gulch is somewhat shallow & wide, with lots of vegetation & trees that have overgrown the gulch for many years.
The 21st St. bridge was originally built in 1910, and it was designed by John Waddell & Harrington. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982, as well as the Washington State Register.
The bridge spans 180 feet, it is 48 ft. wide with 6 ft. sidewalks on each side. The distance from the bridge's center span to the bottom of the gulch is about 50 feet. Of note is that the bridge originally had two street car tracks, which were removed in 1939 at the end of the street car era in Tacoma.


The photo shown above shows the original blueprint plan, with the side elevation, the top view, and the end cross section detailed on it.


The photo above shows the bridge span at the center point, after modifications & repairs had been done to the substructure and supports.


North 23rd Street Bridge

This bridge also crosses the Buckley Gulch just north of the 21st St. bridge. It was designed by the same men, and built at the same time- in 1910. It was originally classified as a residential street, versus a principle arterial such as the 21st St. bridge is. The bridge is 30 feet wide, with 6 ft. sidewalks on each side, and it is 312 ft. long. From midspan the bridge height is about 70 feet above the bottom of the gulch- making it a longer & narrower bridge, with a higher distance than it's neighboring bridge. It is also on the National Register of Historic Places, but due to it's deteriorated condition- it was closed to vehicular traffic in 1987.


The photo shown above shows the original blueprint for the side elevation, top view, and end cross-section.


11th Street Bridge


Here is a Grand Opening program for the 11th Street bridge that relaced an older one across the Tacoma Tideflats. This bridge was built in 1913, and designed by Waddell & Harrington to replace the original 1895 bridge. It crosses the Thea Foss Waterway & has an unusual feature- a lift section that allows for taller ships to pass under it. The length is 2100 feet, with a ft. wide roadway. The road deck stands about 60 feet above the water, and the towers are 207 ft. tall. Due to the poor condition of the bridge, it was closed in 2007 but has since gone thru a major renovation and is now open again.


The photo shown above is a vintage Ellis black & white, which was actually intended to center more on Mt. Rainier than the bridge.


Postcards are a great source for images, and this one was hand colored to accent the look of the bridge & surrounding scenery. A good look at how the bridge looked when the center was lifted to allow ship traffic to pass underneath.


North Proctor Street Bridge

This bridge was built during the Depression era- in 1927. It is located between North 31st & North 33rd Streets on Proctor St., and it traverses the Puget Park ravine. The bridge is 397 feet long


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East 34th Street Bridge

This bridge was built originally in 1915 of wood construction, and later replaced with the existing concrete construction in 1948. The bridge spans 550 feet with an arch distance of 242 ft. and a height of 170 ft. above the Tacoma Eastern gulch. The roadway is 24 feet wide with 5 ft. sidewalks on each side. It is located between East B and East D Streets.


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Misc. Bridges


The photo above shows the Winnifred Street bridge which spans the gulch in Ruston at North 51st St., over the old Northern Pacific railroad tracks- which are now the Burlington Northern/Sante Fe tracks. This bridge was desingned & built by Witt and Gray in 1941, it spans 215 feet, and it stands 125 ft. above the ground. It was placed on the National Historic Register in 1995.


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