Thursday, October 17, 2013

Unexpected Louisville: Part 2

Louisville's Waterfront Park is 72 stunning acres of green urban oasis. Its crowning jewel is the Big 4 Pedestrian Bridge, which just opened February 2013. 

The Big 4 Bridge was originally built as a railroad bridge in 1895, and was rebuilt as a rail and vehicle bridge in 1929 after a series of deadly construction accidents. It fell into disrepair and was officially closed to all types of traffic in the 1960's. After sitting unused for decades, plans for renovation were announced in February 2011. 

The bridge spans the Ohio River between Louisville, Kentucky, and Jeffersonville, Indiana. 

This massive ramp was constructed to allow pedestrian and cyclist access to the bridge. The ramp loops around in a big circle, making it seem long, but also allows for a gentle upward slope.

The bridge was really lovely and was being used by many joggers, cyclists, and families out for strolls, even on a weekday. Folks of all ages sat on well placed benches, taking in the view and enjoying the steady cool breeze.

Dave really loves barges. He is consistently struck by how absurdly dwarfed a tug boat is by its cargo. Dave was delighted to take a series of photos as this barge passed directly under our feet and the Big 4 Bridge. 

It is amazing that such a small boat can push such massive and heavy quantities of cargo upriver. 

The barge pushed onward towards downtown Louisville. 

Louisville was unexpectedly bustling with commerce, construction, industry, and activity. The cranes in this photo were beginning the construction of yet another bridge spanning the Ohio River. 

The view of Waterfront Park from the Big 4 Bridge was great. It is always nice to see a city with green space. It makes the whole city feel alive and healthy. 

This is the current vehicle bridge across the Ohio. When the second bridge is built, each one will be only one direction of traffic. 

The view of Jeffersonville, Indiana. Unfortunately, you can't walk to the Indiana side yet from the bridge, but the ramp is slated to be open in November of this year. 

We are so glad the city turned the Big Four bridge into a recreation area for the public. It is always wonderful to see landmarks preserved and protected for future generations to enjoy. Way to go Louisville!


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