Daily Archives: August 17, 2010

Demolition of the original Dunn Memorial Bridge

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A friend asked me if I could figure out exactly when the original Dunn Memorial Bridge (dedicated August 19, 1933, replacing the old Greenbush Bridge) was demolished. Once its replacement, the current bridge connected to I-787 and the vestiges of the South Mall Expressway, was in place, the process of demolishing the “old” lift bridge began. (I put old in quotes because, 37 years old at its replacement, it was newer than the current Dunn, which is now 41 years old.)

Dunn Bridge demo Sarasota Herald-Tribune May 12 1971.png

Turned out to be harder to track down than I had hoped. Google’s news
archives do have a substantial collection of the Schenectady Gazette,
but the Albany Times-Union and the Troy Record and all the defunct
evening papers are not available. However, there must have been a slow
news day in Sarasota, Florida on May 12, 1971, or maybe the editor just
liked pictures of bridges being blown up, because the front page of the
Sarasota Herald-Tribune featured these AP news photos of the demolition
of the Dunn.

The approaches had been demolished in February 1971. The remaining towers were demolished in June, not without incident – two men planting demolition charges on the towers fell 50 feet into the Hudson but survived.

The new bridge was not fully connected until 1974, when the ramp from the Empire State Plaza to the Dunn and I-787 was opened.

Is there a site specializing in Capital District highways and bridges? Of course there is.

Have I previously written about the Dunn’s namesake, Congressional Medal of Honor recipient Parker F. Dunn? Of course I have.

(Thanks to Gary for the inspiration.)

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