Fremont Bridge - Seattle, WA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member NW_history_buff
N 47° 38.857 W 122° 20.987
10T E 548832 N 5277339
Quick Description: The Fremont Bridge spans the Lake Washington Ship Canal in Seattle, WA
Location: Washington, United States
Date Posted: 2/13/2013 8:50:27 AM
Waymark Code: WMGC71
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member BruceS
Views: 40

Long Description:
Fremont Bridge, spanning Lake Washington Ship Canal was built in 1916 and first opened to the public on June 15, 1917. There is a historical marker on the sidewalk on the SE side of the bridge that describes the history of this bridge and area. I also discovered after visiting the bridge that there are FOUR date stones located on the outside of each of the four towers of the bridge (with the inscription 'FREMONT BRIDGE MCMXVI'). There may be a metal date plaque located on the northern side of the bridge as well.

The date plaque reads:

FREMONT AVE. BRIDGE.
CONSTRUCTED 1916.
A. H. DIMOCK, CITY ENG'R.
F. A. RAPP, BRIDGE ENG'R.
D. R. HUNTINGTON, ARCHITECT.
-----(Illegible)------
CONTRACTORS FOR SUPERSTRUCTURE
PACIFIC STATES CONSTRUCTION CO.
CONTRACTORS FOR SUBSTRUCTURE
FABRICATED BY
AMERICAN BRIDGE CO.

There is also some great history of this bridge in an article on HistoryLink.org that reads:

On June 15, 1917, Seattle's Fremont Bridge, spanning the Lake Washington Ship Canal, opens to traffic. The bridge is built to connect the neighborhood of Fremont with the west side of Lake Union at the base of Queen Anne Hill. The Fremont Bridge is a bascule bridge with counterweight balancing and cantilevered "leafs" (the parts that raise and lower). It is painted blue and orange. The bridge clears the water by 30 feet and has opened and closed its double-leafed gates more than any other Seattle drawbridge. It is one of the busiest bascule bridges in the world.

The Lake Washington Ship Canal was completed in 1917. In the process, the creek connecting Lake Union and Salmon Bay was enlarged and became part of the canal, deep enough and wide enough for oceangoing vessels to enter. The old trestle bridges were taken down and the Fremont Bridge was built. The bridge employed technology developed in Chicago in 1898.

The Bridge Engineer was F. A. Rapp, and the pier design was by D. R. Huntington. The counterweight pits and workings are housed in two concrete piers, each of which has a tower.

The current colors of the bridge were selected by a 1985 poll of Fremont residents and by the Fremont Arts Council. As of 2005, the bridge opens about 35 times a day. The community celebrated its 500,000th opening on September 20, 1991. By January 2006 the bridge had opened for marine traffic some 566,000 times.

Between September 2005 and June 2007, the bridge's 90-year-old approaches were replaced. This required the rerouting of Metro buses, many lane closings, and some bridge closings. The bridge's traffic signals, sidewalks, and curbs were also improved. SDOT reopened Fremont Bridge's four lanes on May 18, 2007. The bridge's mechanical and electrical structures will be renovated during the next year.

County / Borough / Parish: King County

Year listed: 1982

Historic (Areas of) Significance: Event, Architecture/Engineering

Periods of significance: 1900-1924

Historic function: Transportation

Current function: Transportation

Privately owned?: no

Season start / Season finish: From: 8/14/2015 To: 8/14/2015

Hours of operation: From: 12:00 AM To: 12:00 AM

Primary Web Site: [Web Link]

Secondary Website 1: [Web Link]

Secondary Website 2: [Web Link]

Street address: Not listed

National Historic Landmark Link: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
Please give the date and brief account of your visit. Include any additional observations or information that you may have, particularly about the current condition of the site. Additional photos are highly encouraged, but not mandatory.
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