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John A. Weeks III
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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
Aquila Lane Street Bridge
Minnehaha Creek Street Crossing
Saint Louis Park, MN

Aquila Lane Bridge

• Structure ID: NBI 92687.
• Location: River Mile 15.5.
• River Elevation: 902 Feet.
• Structure Type: Street Bridge.
• Construction: Timber Slab.
• Length: 27 Feet, 25 Foot Longest Span.
• Width: 31 Feet, 2 Lanes.
• Height Above Water: ??? Feet.
• Date Built: 1950.
The Aquila Lane Bridge crosses the Minnehaha Creek a few blocks east of highway US-169 in Saint Louis Park. The bridge is a 1950 timber bridge. I find it unusual for a city to build a wooden bridge, even 60 years ago, so I suspect that this bridge was built by the developers of this subdivision. The bridge would have been turned over to the city after the neighborhood was completed.

I have found two names in use for this bridge. The through street is West 34th Street. Just east of the bridge, West 34th Street turns into Aquila Lane, and West 34th Street branches off of Aquila Lane about a block east of the Minnehaha Creek. On a map, it looks like West 34th is continuous, and Aquila Lane starts at the branch-off point. However, the house numbers suggest that Aquila Lane continues west to the bridge, and West 34th Street has a gap. What this street trivia means is that it isn't clear from street markings or maps if this bridge is on Aquila Lane, West 34th Street, or half and half. The National Bridge Inventory lists it as being on West 34th Street, however, I commonly see Aquila Lane used for the bridge name. Since this is my story, I am calling it the Aquila Lane Bridge.

The area west of the creek is essentially an island in that there is only one bridge across the creek, and the west and south sides are blocked by highways. That makes for a very quiet neighborhood. In fact, part of the Saint Louis Park neighborhood development plan is visible in the photos below in the form of neighborhood boundary marker signs. There is a sign on the west side of the bridge stating that you are entering the Cobblestone Neighborhood when traveling eastbound, while a similar sign on the east side of the bridge indicates that you are entering the Minnehaha Neighborhood when traveling westbound.

The photo above is looking west down the length of the Aquila Lane Bridge deck from the south side of the street. The creek is flowing downstream to the left in this photo.


Aquila Lane Bridge
The photo above is the downstream south face of the Aquila Lane Bridge over the Minnehaha Creek. The photo below is a similar view that is overexposed to allow one to see under the bridge. The water flow at this location is little more than a trickle. Again, one has to wonder how this stream could possibly have a famous waterfall just 15 miles downstream.

Aquila Lane Bridge
Aquila Lane Bridge
The photo above is looking west down the length of the bridge deck from the westbound traffic lane. The photo below is looking east down the length of the bridge deck from the center of the street. The green and white signs are Saint Louis Park neighborhood signs. The Minnehaha Neighborhood lies to the west of the creek, while the Cobblecrest Neighborhood is east of the creek.

Aquila Lane Bridge
Aquila Lane Bridge
The photo above is the upstream north face of the bridge. This is a difficult sun angle given that the late autumn afternoon sun is located just above the house on the far side of the bridge. The photo below is the walkway on the north side of the bridge deck.

Aquila Lane Bridge

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