Como Historic Streetcar Pedestrian Bridge

Project Overview

This project will restore the historically significant Como Streetcar Pedestrian Bridge, create a bicycle and pedestrian trail connection and provide interpretive panels presenting the history of the bridge and streetcar system. The Bridge, built in 1905 to provide safe pedestrian access into Como Park over the busy streetcar tracks, has weathered badly and following heavy vandalism in the early 1960’s. This concrete bridge has retained sufficient structural integrity to make it a candidate for restoration. Construction Plans were prepared in collaboration with historic preservations specialists and the MnDOT office of Cultural Resources for the creation of a trail connection, provide site interpretation for the bridge and streetcar system and to restore the bridge in accordance with historic preservation standards. This project in close proximity to the Historic Streetcar Station, will make this an important integrated historic addition to Como Park.

Updates

October 15th, 2015 

Como Bridge and Interpretive Site now open to the public.
Yes, it is now finally open for your use and enjoyment. Please visit this great restoration of an important piece of Como Park’s history and, if you have the time, learn all about the streetcar system, the 1905 park entry and the nationally recognized concrete bridge described in the interpretive display panels. In case you can’t visit in person, please check out the finished bridge photos linked below. The only remaining work, scheduled for spring of 2016, will be to place ‘chip seal’ to the bridge approach paths that will replicate the original gravel paths.  Due to the bridge’s age, it will not be cleared of snow over the winter but it will remain open until the snow flies. 

July 2, 2015

The bridge restoration work is starting to reveal glimpses of how the completed restoration will look. New Arch concrete edges on both sides have been poured and with the forms removed, the true-to-history makeover continues. (Photo sequence of arch) Precast concrete rail delivery has been delayed due to a discrepancy between the historic documents and the field conditions. Adjustments in the casting forms have been completed so the fabrication of the rail pieces continues. The contractor anticipates a 4 week delay which will push the completion date to the end of August. The possibility of some limited use of the Streetcar Station before the restoration work is complete is being investigated.

May 20, 2015

New concrete mix has been designed to match as closely as possible the 100 years of weathering processes seen in the original remaining concrete parts of the bridge. The tide of construction has shifted from concrete removals to replacement as concrete is being added back onto the bridge components. Fabrication of the precast concrete railing pieces has started and is expected to take about 10 weeks for all the rail pieces to be completed. (See precast rail mock-up and other construction photos)

April 2, 2015

Construction activities have resumed with installation of the temporary support shoring that will provide additional support while the existing concrete deck and other loose concrete is removed. Concrete mixes and color selections will adhere to the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for historic restoration. Project completion will be in late July, 2015.

December 1, 2014

Construction started in mid-October with the trail construction work. The trail excavation and base material have been placed and compacted. The bituminous trail surface will be placed in the spring. Temporary support shoring will be erected under the bridge to provide a safety support measure during concrete removal work on the bridge before construction is suspended for the winter season. Construction Progress meetings will be held every Friday with updates posted when significant milestones have occurred. Check back for ongoing information.

Project Resources

Historic Photos

Existing photos

Construction Photos

Completed Bridge Photos