Pennybacker Bridge (TX Loop 360)

Pennybacker Bridge (TX Loop 360)

The Pennybacker Bridge carries Texas Route Loop 360 (Capital of Texas Highway) across Lake Austin and the Colorado River in Austin, Texas. It is named for Percy Pennybacker, who designed bridges for the Texas Highway Department and who was a pioneer in the technology of welded structures.

Construction on the Pennybacker Bridge began in late 1979 when a contract was let to Clearwater Constructors of Denver, Colorado. 1 Steel erection was completed in July 1982 utilizing U.S. Steel’s Corten steel, which forms a stable rust-like appearance after several years’ exposure to weather. It was chosen over conventional steel types to have the crossing blend in with the surrounding rugged terrain.

The Pennybacker Bridge was completed at the cost of $10 million, dedicated on November 29, 1982, and opened to traffic on December 3. 1 It was the second bridge of its type in the world. The crossing received the 1984 Federal Highway Administration’s Excellence in Highway Design award. In 1992, the Austin members of the Consulting Engineers Council of Texas selected the bridge as the most innovative example of local architecture.


  • State: Texas
  • Route:
  • Type: Steel Arch
  • Status: Active - Automobile
  • Total Length: 1,150 feet
  • Main Span Length: 600 feet
  • Truss Height:


  1. “Pennybacker Bridge.” Emporis. N.p., n.d. Web. 6 Nov. 2012. Article.

Leave a Reply