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St. Anthony Falls Bridge Traffic

St. Anthony Falls Bridge Traffic

A long exposure hides the cars, but reveals their movements and intents. I chose this photo out of the set because of all of the turn signals on the right.

See the blue wavy sculpture on the left? It represents the curve the Mississippi makes as it passes through Minneapolis and over the St. Anthony Falls.

St. Anthony Bridge LED Detail

St. Anthony Bridge LED Detail

See the blue LED lights? That’s why the bridge is blue. Good to know eh? I think to appreciate this bridge, you need to get down under it and look up. The view of the city from the road is so impressive that the designers lowered the railings and minimized all structures on top. Many famous bridges flaunt their structure above the deck: the Golden Gate, the Brooklyn, the Sydney Harbour etc. But the St. Anthony Falls keeps her beauty out of site, deferring your eyes to the city she supports. How Minnesotan is that?

When you stand under this bridge, bathed in the cool blue light, you notice that she makes no sound as the traffic goes overhead, that there are no cables or decorative bits, just massive solidness all around. This bridge makes one clear statement: I will never fail you; never.

St. Anthony Falls Bridge from Cedar

St. Anthony Falls Bridge from Cedar

There’s a freshly paved path down here, under the bridges. You can pick it up at the Stone Arch Bridge. If you go just up just upstream of the Cedar Avenue Bridge and look, you will see this view. I’m looking forward to coming down here in the winter to see what the lights do to snow.

Megalith Pillars Below 35W

Megalith Pillars Below 35W

I have a lot more confidence in the St. Anthony Falls Bridge than I in old number 9340. Look at these massive monuments to modernism! True blue in every way. It’s very peaceful under here too, there’s barely any traffic noise and the bridge doesn’t make a sound. St. Anthony proudly carries the life-blood of the city and looks good doing it.

35W Bridge is Open!

35W Bridge is Open!

Alas, all is back to normal here in river city. It’s been tough on this great city to be essentially cut in half for just over a year. What was so shocking for all of us who didn’t lose anyone in the collapse is that everyone either crossed the bridge regularly or knew someone who did — 140,000 vehicles a day passed over the old bridge.

This first photo was taken from the Washington entrance ramp going North, ten minutes before the bridge opened. You can see the blue glow of the LED lights on the bridge.=
A parade of vehicles began a slow procession across the bridge, a row of troopers, a row of construction trucks and then the crowd that had assembled behind them, honking and hooting!

Bridge Workers

Bridge Workers

Ever get the feeling someone’s watching you? This construction worker at the 35W St. Anthony Bridge construction site takes a moment to check out the crowds watching him. I have a hard time typing when someone is watching me, I can’t imagine working with power tools in the wind 150 feet over the Mississippi River.

What a job! Look at all the cool gear these guys have. Just to the left of the red thing in the bottom left is a patch of gray — that’s the bridge, everything else scaffolding and gear.

Look at all this guy is wearing: a harness, knee pads, gobs of safety gear and a huge tool belt (check out the hammer). For those of us who earn their salt slingin’ bits, a real job like this is pretty impressive.