This gives me some hope that if the State ever gets around to reconstruction the badly crumbling 9/20 bridge in Rensselaer, it might recreate its graceful crossed appearance and maintain something that was lovely in its time. I’ve seen some recent repairs on another bridge that looks similar, which makes me hopeful that when the time comes aesthetics will be considered, rather than tearing down something lovely and replacing it with jersey barriers and guiderails.
Thankfully, it’s becoming more common that our highway design engineers give some thought to aesthetics. For too long, millions was spent for concrete and asphalt without a thought given to making it look even slightly appealing. Increasingly in recent years, we’ve had some local examples of highway designers thinking of aesthetics. This was most notable with the Lansingburgh bridge reconstruction, which was a faithful reproduction of its predecessor. And along the Route 85/Slingerlands Bypass corridor, some lovely touches have been included. This particularly nice tulip is in a spot where probably only folks who live in the neighborhood would ever see it, along Berkshire Boulevard. (And if you want to see what preceded it, you can see the old bridge under reconstruction on Google StreetView here.)