Minnesota Roads - Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge

Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge



South Lake Ave. SB approaching the bridge. It's the only access to the Minnesota Point (Park Point) neighborhood, but if you live there, prepare to be very patient, because the bridge only seems to be down for a couple of minutes at a time before another ship is coming through - and they apparently have priority. Bum rushing the bridge will just send you straight into the counterweight. So sit and enjoy the architectural details while you wait.


Here's what the bridge looks like when it's down, if you're lucky enough to see it. It was built in 1905 as a transporter bridge, hence the top truss; the truss had rails on it and carried a section of road from shore to shore while ships passed in the interim. It was converted in 1929-1930 to a standard lift bridge, but keeping the unique double truss.


And here's what the bridge looks like when it's up, from the park to the northeast. It's got a miniature lighthouse next to it with a giant name, the Duluth Harbor South Breakwater Inner Light. As a lift bridge, it lifts the deck truss into the top truss for a delicious exoskeleton trussception.


Click to watch and listen to the bridge lowering (and the wind, and the birds). It's like a combination of a roller coaster lift, a fire drill, and a day at the beach.

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