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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
Quincy Bay Rail Bridge
BNSF Mississippi River Crossing At Quincy
Quincy, Illinois

Quincy Bay Rail Bridge

• Structure ID:
• Location: River Mile 380.0.
• River Elevation: 470 Feet.
• Railroad: Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad.
• Daily Traffic Count: 20 Trains Per Day (Estimated).
• Bridge Type: Steel Plate Deck.
• Length: 707 Feet Overall, 105 Foot Longest Span.
• Width: 1 Track.
• Navigation Channel Width: 90 Feet.
• Height Above Water: 50 Feet.
• Date Built: Built 1960.
There is a large group of back channels and sloughs to the north of Quincy, Illinois, on the Illinois side of the river. This area is collectively known as Quincy Bay. About one third of the bay area has since been filled and drained, with a large pumping station located about two miles north of this bridge to keep the reclaimed area dry. The Quincy Bay river channel is the outlet for this backwater area.

The first two bridges over Quincy Bay were built about one half mile south of this location. That includes an 1868 swing span, and a replacement 1899 bridge that still stands as the Quinsippi Island Bridge. When the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy replaced the rail crossing at Quincy in 1960, they used a new alignment that ran north of the existing bridges.

This bridge is one of the more modern railroad bridges on the upper Mississippi River. As a result, it was built high above the water. This span is not built this high for navigation reasons, rather, the main channel bridge is just west of here, and trains do not work well with sudden changes in track elevation. The bridge connects the high main channel bridge to some bluffs on the east side of the river.

Quincy Bay Rail Bridge
Quincy Bay Rail Bridge

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