Thursday, December 6, 2012

Florida Keys Bridge #14 Long Key Historic Bridge MM65

Long Key Historic Bridge MM65
December 6, 2012, Keith Nelson, Rob Hickman

December 6, 2012, Mile Marker 64


Old Long Key Channel Bridge

Overview: Closed-spandrel arch bridge over Long Key Channel on Florida East Coast Railway (prior to 1935), Old US 1 (up to replacement), and presently the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail
Location: Monroe County, Florida
Feature Carried: Old alignment of US 1, former Florida East Coast Railway
Feature Crossed: Long Key Channel
History: Built ca. 1908-12 for use by the Overseas Railroad, Converted to highway use (US 1) in 1938, Made obsolete by new bridge in 1982, Converted into a pedestrian bridge in 2001.
Type: Arch
Subtype: Concrete closed spandrel segmental arch
Recognition: Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on August 3, 1979
Length: Main Span: 50 ft, Total: 12040 ft
Builders: William Krome, Joseph Meredith, Florida East Coast Railway; Rebuilt by B. M. Duncan (Chief Engineer)
Status: Open to Pedestrians as part of the F.K.O.H.T.
Notes: While extending the Florida East Coast Railway was Henry Flager's ultimate goal, the intermediate milestone in construction of the railroad in the Key's was to reach Knight's Key Dock in Marathon. The largest bridge to be built in this section was the Long Key Bridge. Due to the depth of the water, the central and eastern arches were enlarged to span 50 feet. The western approach arches are the standard 35 feet. In all, there are 180 50 foot arches and 42 35 foot arches. While under construction, a hurricane struck the work site on October 17, 1906. About 130 workers were killed. The bridge was finally completed in 1908. After being widened and converted to vehicular use in 1938, the bridge was bypassed in 1982. Since then the bridge was converted to a pedestrian bridge with fishing platforms. The widened deck was removed.

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