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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
Valley City Rail Bridge
Illinois River Railroad Crossing
Valley City, IL

Valley City Rail Bridge

• Structure ID:
• Location: River Mile 61.4
• River Elevation: 420 Feet
• Railroad: Norfolk Southern Railway
• Daily Traffic Count: ??? Trains Per Day (Estimated)
• Bridge Type: Steel Truss W/Lift Span
• Bridge Length: 625 Feet (Estimated), 320 Foot Longest Span (Estimated)
• Bridge Width: ??? Feet, 1 Track
• Navigation Channel Width: 300 Feet
• Height Above Water: 32 Feet
• Date Built: 1959
This lift bridge is located on the Decatur Subdivision of the Wabash Railroad as part of a direct route from Detroit to Kansas City that did not require going through Chicago or Saint Louis. The route crosses the Illinois River here at Valley City, and crossed the Mississippi River on the more famous Wabash Bridge at Hannibal.

The first bridge at this location was built just upstream. The rail bed is still visible on topographical and aerial photos. That bridge was also a truss bridge, but had a swing span rather than a lift span. The current bridge was built in 1959, and the old bridge was removed. The rail line though Meredosia was abandoned at the same time.

The current bridge is a large truss span about 320 feet long, flanked by a pair of fixed position through truss spans that are about 150 feet long each. A series of steel girder spans lead up to the truss spans on each side of the river.

The Wabash Railroad traces its roots back to being one of the first railroads in the US when it started laying track in Meredosia in 1838. The name Wabash was first used in 1879 when the line was known as the Wabash, Saint Louis, & Pacific. Various forms of the name Wabash Railroad and Wabash Railway were used until the railroad was taken over by Norfolk & Western in 1964, which in turn became the Norfolk Southern Railway in 1982.

Valley City Rail Bridge
Valley City Rail Bridge

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