In 2010, the Memorial Bridge was still intact and standing guard at the mouth of the Piscataqua River. The bridge has since been dismantled and a replacement structure is being built offsite and will be floated up the river in the spring of 2013.
Portsmouth is full of hidden gem locations, and you never know what view might be lurking around the corner from some of the downtown spots. Harbour Place and The Memorial Bridge of Portsmouth and Kittery can be seen from the roof deck of a nearby home along the waterfront on Bow Street. This view is a bit different these days…but the shipyard and the Naval Prison are still clearly visible in the background, with the Piscataqua River flowing through the frame.
The approach span to the Memorial Bridge stands now as rubble next to the former site of the Pier II Restaurant. The North Tower can be seen without its counterweight in the distance.
It’s funny how foreign the remaining parts of the Memorial Bridge now look in the midst of the Piscataqua River. With the South Tower, the lift span, and the Portsmouth approach gone from the scene, the remaining tower and abutment look distinctly out of place and completely functionless.
Progress on the deconstruction of the Memorial Bridge is swift. I left work not expecting to see much different, but sure enough – the south span of the Memorial Bridge had been cut from the approach in Portsmouth and was waiting for its final departure down to a scrap yard outside of Boston. I’m getting more excited to see things change, and to see the new bridge come to life.
Today’s post is a memorial to the South Tower of the Memorial Bridge, which has since been cut to half its height, and will no longer exist in a matter of hours. The sky on the evening that this particular image was taken was very airy and cloudy, but I decided to give this shot a more somber processing to reflect the tower’s numbered days.
This previously impossible shot was taken on the decking of the Memorial Bridge. With the recent closure of the bridge, I was able to head over this weekend…which I did at sunrise on Saturday morning. More shots to follow throughout the week with a view of the bridge from a few spots at Prescott Park. With its recent closure of 4-6 weeks, which is more likely to be an indefinite closing followed by a definite replacement, it’s given a new sense of urgency to capturing it as it stands bridging New Hampshire and Maine. Look forward to new posts this week with some vibrant colors to accompany the deteriorating bridge.
It’s close to the end for the Memorial Bridge – or so it seems. It was announced this week that the bridge would be closed for 4-6 weeks for repair, or even indefinitely according to Foster’s. I don’t think this surprises anyone ’round these parts, but it’s sort of a sad moment. Things will get better and the bridge will eventually be replaced with either a very similar looking one, or a drastic departure if some of the initial design critics get their way. One thing is sure, this original lift span bridge with all of its character isn’t really safe for vehicles anymore. It’s going to be damn cool for photographers and pedestrians to enjoy its architecture and some steady decks for a while (you can’t get a sharp image with dozens of cars driving through).
As I promised earlier in the week, I’ll begin to feature the “evolved” look of State Street. The sidewalks have been jazzed up with bricks all the way from the Memorial Bridge entrance and near Prescott Park down to the Pleasant Street intersection at The Rusty Hammer and all the way to my parking spot at 325 State Street. Without question it’s a new look, complete with street lamps (all freshly adorned with pine wreaths for the holidays), sidewalk trees and nice bumpouts to moderate the flow of traffic – all which result in a handsome new look for the streetscape. I hope all the merchants are feeling good and enjoy some peace and quiet after the long year everyone has had…and that 2011 will reap some of the benefits. I almost can’t believe it’s been as long as it has, but also can’t believe how much has really been accomplished. Now when are we going to bury those overhead powerlines?