Historic Bertram Bridge to be Replaced

Construction is expected to begin in November. Historic Bridge will be relocated to a natural preserve

BERTRAM/ CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA- The oldest existing historic bridge in Linn County is scheduled to be replaced this fall. However, the historic bridge will have a new life as a pedestrian crossing. The Bertram Bridge features a hybrid Whipple and Pratt through truss bridge with pinned connections. The truss design is similar to a rarely-used Hammond truss. The bridge was generally built using wrought iron. The portal bracings are Town Lattice which extends to its heal braces. These bracings are ornamental and typical of the portals used for bridges built by the Wrought Iron Bridge Company of Canton, Ohio. WIBCo built this bridge in 1876 and it can be found on Bertram Road spanning Indian Creek at Mischka Press. The 191-foot long bridge is eligible for the National Register.

The 145-year old bridge and its blue-colored bridge has reached the end of its structural life as a vehicular crossing and therefore will be replaced. According to officials at Linn County, construction on the bridge will begin this fall- most likely in November. Peterson Contractors of Reinbeck, Iowa won the contract in December of 2021 at a cost of $2.4 million. The project consists of replacing the bridge with a concrete structure that has two lanes, accommodating the increasing traffic. The road will be closed to all traffic during the time of construction. The truss bridge itself will be dismantled and reassembled as a pedestrian bridge at Indian Creek Nature Center on Otis Road. When the reassembly will be completed and the historic bridge will be reopened remains open, but the project is expected to take up to six months to complete.

You can follow up on the bridge replacement project by clicking on this website. You can sign up to follow the project closely.

The bridge is part of a tour guide done a few years ago. Click here to have a look. A map is enclosed there to help you.

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