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Thread: Mount Vernon Trail Bridge 12 Replacement in 2021

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    Default Mount Vernon Trail Bridge 12 Replacement in 2021

    NPS has received funding from VDOT to replace Bridge 12 on the Mount Vernon Trail. Bridge 12 is the one on the south end of the trail with a steep grade on both sides that also includes sharp curves. The new bridge will provide for a flatter crave with out curves. More information and a few pictures at the link below:

    https://mountvernontrail.org/2020/09...d-realignment/

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    That's great news! This was where my last crash was-- I've always hated this bridge.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Emm View Post
    That's great news! This was where my last crash was-- I've always hated this bridge.
    Just read something last night that said itís a 9% grade on both sides of the bridge. Canít imagine managing that with a kid on a single speed bike.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    Just read something last night that said it’s a 9% grade on both sides of the bridge. Can’t imagine managing that with a kid on a single speed bike.

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    It’s a short climb and much easier than the climb at the end of the trail near Mt Vernon. I’ve done it with kids in tow, though I couldn’t imagine doing that with a single speed.

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    There used to be a similar bridge just before Mount Vernon. I wonder what the NPS was thinking when they put these in back in the day. They aren't pleasant for walking, biking or running. Maybe they were the lowest cost alternative. Of course, the NPS didn't have to pay all the ER bills (it me) caused by this design.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rootchopper View Post
    There used to be a similar bridge just before Mount Vernon. I wonder what the NPS was thinking when they put these in back in the day. They aren't pleasant for walking, biking or running. Maybe they were the lowest cost alternative. Of course, the NPS didn't have to pay all the ER bills (it me) caused by this design.
    Just checked the Trail Safety Study and Bridge 12 is listed as unknown for the date of construction. It looks like nearly all of the other bridges from Mount Vernon to Dyke Marsh were replaced in 2004/2005.

    Not sure if any of the folks who have been around a while know the history of this placement. If I had to make a wild guess it would be a combo of:
    1. There was a bridle path and the trail just followed it.
    2. The bridge is located to minimize the cost of a longer span
    3. There were no trail design standards to rely on to justify a better route

    I wasnít around for the 70s bike boom but my impression was that riding a bike was slower and more recreation focused and less transportation and exercised focused which may have influenced design choices.


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    Does Judd's link work (with pictures displayed) for anyone? I tried it in 3 browsers and the inline images never load...

    {Edit: Original link has since been fixed, so images display now; thanks, Judd!}
    Last edited by ChristoB50; 09-21-2020 at 12:57 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    I wasn’t around for the 70s bike boom but my impression was that riding a bike was slower and more recreation focused and less transportation and exercised focused which may have influenced design choices.
    There was definitely a boom in bike commuting also, just not necessarily safe cycling. (Those were the days before seat belts...when you could still hold your baby on your lap in the front seat with a can of beer in one hand and a cigarette in the other...the good old days.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChristoB50 View Post
    Does Judd's link work (with pictures displayed) for anyone? I tried it in 3 browsers and the inline images never load...
    I went directly to the images referenced in the page's HTML source, and I was getting a 403 Forbidden error.
    e.g. https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/gN...S93XgB9GPuXkis

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    Quote Originally Posted by josh View Post
    I went directly to the images referenced in the page's HTML source, and I was getting a 403 Forbidden error.
    e.g. https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/gN...S93XgB9GPuXkis
    Woops. Iíll try to get it fixed tonight. I stole them from a slide deck hosted on a limited access google drive and it looks like Wordpress created a link to the image that I could see when I published the post because I have access rights.

    Thanks for letting me know Chris. Thanks for the source link Josh. Made it super easy for me to diagnose.


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