Sunday, May 6, 2012

"Q" Bridge, New Haven, CT

Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge AKA "Q" Bridge
About the picture: There are three bridges in that picture. The one in the background is the Tomlinson Lift Bridge. The one in the foreground is the OLD Quinnipiac Bridge (AKA Q Bridge). The one in the middle -- the one with all the cables -- is the NEW Q Bridge.

I hadn't photographed the new construction since last December, when it was just the concrete posts and some highway stretching away from it in both directions, with only some of the cables attached, and no clear idea how the bridge would shape up.

Construction ca Christmas, 2011
A couple of weeks ago, I read an article in the Courant about the plans for the Q Bridge, along with a rendering of how it would look when completed (read that article here). And then I overheard some people talking about the bridge construction at work!

I really had no choice; I had to return to New Haven and check it out for myself.

The section of I-95 that passes over the Quinnipiac River is one of the most congested sections of road in the state. Everyone traveling from northern or eastern New England to New York City goes through this bottleneck. Traffic is sometimes stalled for miles. The new Q bridge will greatly expand the road's capacity in both directions, as well as using an innovative bridge design not before seen in the US, the "extra-dosed" cable design.

These seagulls were hanging around on Long Wharf, so I took their pictures. It's not ALWAYS about the bridges!

Closer look at the cable supports
Parking is easy, just follow the signs for Long Wharf and park in any of the small parking lots. If you go up Chapel Street, there's some parking at a sports field just north of the bridge. If the traffic is bad that day, you can park on I-95 itself in a traffic jam for an up-close look at the new construction.

Wind Turbine
If you choose to park at the sports field, you get this awesome wind turbine for free.

Here it is again!
That turbine looks even more awesome from the OTHER side, looming behind the bridges...

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