George Street Bridge is a 16-panel, pin-connected Whipple through truss crossing that carries George Street over Hogan Creek in Aurora, Indiana. The circa 1887 iron bridge was built by Lomas Forge and Bridge Works of Cincinnati, Ohio, overseen by F.J.P. Brackett, the county engineer and superintendent, and replaced a wooden truss. 1
The new crossing carried trolley cars until the 1940s, U.S. Route 50 until 1954 2 and IN Route 56 until 1972. Two wings on both sides carried utility pipes; the west wing also carried a pedestrian walkway.
George Street Bridge was rehabilitated in 1950 when the wood slat deck was replaced with a steel grid deck. 1 Deterioration of the walkway supports required the removal of the pedestrian path in 1974. The entire bridge was closed to automobile traffic because of structural concerns in 1979, but fully rehabilitated between 1983 to 1989 and reopened to automobile and pedestrian traffic. 3
A detailed inspection of George Street Bridge was conducted in November 2000 that raised some structural issues, including popped rivets, loose bolt connections, metal loss on diagonal plates, a vertical beam crack, and rust and a slight buckle on a top cord plate. 4 The weight limit was lowered from 20 tons to 15 tons per vehicle on March 19, 2001. Additional inspections later in the month revealed nine newly popped rivets, which led to a reduction in the bridge’s weight limit to six tons per vehicle.
The George Street bridge was rehabilitated in 2010, which included the installation of a new floor system, substructure improvements, truss analysis, truss reinforcement, portal bracing reinforcement, new paint, the replacement of failed rivets with new hot-metal driven rivets. 5 The rehabilitation allowed the bridge’s weight limit to increase to 36 tons.
The iron bridge, one of the oldest in the state, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1984.1
- State: Indiana
- Type: Whipple through truss
- Status: Active - Automobile
- Total Length: 254 feet
- Main Span Length: 200 feet
- Roadway Width: 23 feet
- Truss Height:
- Above Vertical Clearance: 33 feet
- Markwalter, Robert A. “George Street Bridge, County Bridge #159.” National Register of Historic Places Inventory – Nomination Form. N.p.: n.p., 1983. N. pag. Print.
- First Group Engineering, Inc. “Engineer’s Report.” Intersection Improvement on U.S. 50 at George Street Railroad Protection and Surface on George Street (aside U.S. 50) at CSX Railroad. N.p.: n.p., 2006. N. pag. Print.
- Masing, Milton A. “Aurora.” Dearborn County, Indiana in Vintage Postcards. Charleston: Arcadia, 1999. 40. Print.
- “Popped Rivets Concern; Bridge Weight Limit Dropped Again.” The Journal Press and The Register, 5 Apr. 2001. Web. 30 Dec. 2015.
- “Iron Trusses.” J.A. Barker Engineering. 6 July 2011. Web. 30 Dec. 2015.