Saturday, October 20, 2007

Walnut St. Pedestrian Bridge Chattanooga

At the southern terminus of the Riverpark trail, I walked my bicycle across the plaza of the Hunter Museum; and then proceeded to the Walnut Street Pedestrian Bridge. Bicyclists take the middle of the wooden planks and strollers take the sidewalks. I had a clear view up and down the Tennessee River which is called the Nickojack Reservoir at this point. A reproduction of a paddle wheel riverboat carrying tourists passed below me on the river. Up river I could see an island which is a refuge for wildlife. I crossed over the bridge to the left bank and bought a banana split ice cream cone at the Subway Shop.
Down river from Walnut St Bridge is the recently opened and re-built Market St. Bridge. As I discovered later, the bridge is a relatively rare class of draw bridge known as a Bascule bridge. Large concrete blocks act as counter weights and help raise the leaves of the bridge like a seesaw. Another example of a Bascule, but smaller, is the Route 1 bridge at Mystic Harbor in Connecticut. I biked across that particular bridge on one of my days off while working at Millstone Nuclear Plant, located on the shores of Long Island Sound, Connecticut.

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