Locke Avenue Bridge - History and Description

History and Description

The Locke Avenue Bridge was eligible for inclusion in the National Record of Historic Places. A Historic Bridge Alternatives Analysis dated June 1995 was prepared by Bettigole Andrews and Clark, Inc. and recommended to replace the swing bridge with a fixed bridge. The recommended alternative was accepted by the New Jersey State Historic Preservation Office of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation. As requirements of the Memorandum of Agreement from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, a HABS/HAER Recordation of the bridge and a Historic Brochure were prepared. The purpose of the HABS/HAER document and the Brochure are to provide a written and photographic recordation of the history of commerce on the Raccoon Creek as it relates to the Locke Avenue Bridge and the history and physical operation of this type of movable bridge as located in this type of setting. The swing bridge on Locke Avenue over the Raccoon Creek was a 154'-6" long. It was a single-lane, center pivot Swing Bridge that carried vehicular traffic over Raccoon Creek. The swing span was designed to manually rotate at its center pivot pier which allowed the passage of marine traffic to pass underneath. It was constructed in 1911. The swing span had been locked in the closed position since 1971. The main channel of the Raccoon Creek was under the northern span of the bridge and has not been dredged since April 1965. The swing span was connected through a pony trusses. It was 17'-6" high, measured center-to-center, between top and bottom truss chords. Also, the clear roadway width was 15'-3", measured between two guide rails. There were no shoulders or sidewalks on the bridge and the overall width of the structure was 18'-7". The bridge deck was constructed of timber planks with a 6"x 6" timber curb along both sides of the deck. The vertical clearance above the bridge deck was unlimited and unrestricted. The posted load capacity on the bridge was for a maximum of 5 ton vehicles.

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