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23 Mile Rd. / Kalamazoo River

MDOT Historic Bridge 23 Mile Rd. / Kalamazoo River


County: Calhoun

City/Township: Marengo Twp.

Location: 23 Mile Rd. / Kalamazoo River

Year Built: 1922

About this Bridge:
The 23 Mile Road Bridge is eligible for the National Register as one of the oldest well-preserved examples of the state's unique curved-chord through-girder design. The Michigan State Highway Department developed its standard for the design in the 1921-1922 biennium, and built the first bridge of this type, a 90-foot span over the Raisin River at Tecumseh, in 1922. Concrete through-girder bridges fell from favor by the end of that decade because they could not be widened to accommodate increasing traffic volumes and loads.

Plans for the 23 Mile Road Bridge were prepared by the state highway department in January 1922. The bridge was subsequently built by Calhoun County as a state reward bridge. The contractor, Mead Brothers of Battle Creek, Michigan, had to dismantle the superstructure of the previous bridge, probably a steel truss, before erecting the new concrete span. Construction cost of the new bridge totaled $10,353.