The Bridges of Texas: 12 Beauties

Categories: Texas

We don't do rustic covered bridges here in Texas; we don't do massive Golden Gate spans either.

But that doesn't mean the state isn't home to some beautiful pieces of bridge art.

You can look for abandoned bridges here. Here, though, are a dozen of Texas's best that are still open in one way or another.

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12. Suspension Bridge, Waco
The fabled Suspension Bridge in Waco is now pedestrian only, but when it opened in 1870 it was the longest single-span suspension bridge west of the Mississippi. Getting the building materials to the remoteness of Waco was almost as difficult as the construction itself.

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11. Queen Isabella Causeway, South Padre Island
Connecting the Texas mainland with South Padre Island, this two-mile-long span includes a graceful curve and arch.

It famously collapsed ten years ago when barges rammed into it:

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Eight people died, but since it happened just four days after 9/11, the event is largely unknown outside of the immediate area.


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10. Rainbow Bridge, Bridge City
The first time I encountered this thing was at night, driving from Houston. Naturally, we'd been on nothing but flat land forever, but somehow in the distance I saw car lights waaay up in the sky and wondered what the hell was going on.

Why is the Rainbow Bridge so high? (It's the tallest in Texas.) The city of Beaumont thought it would interfere with shipping, so the builders had to agree to make it high enough to accommodate -- get this -- a U.S. Navy ship that dirigibles hooked up to, which was the tallest ship in the fleet at the time.

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12 comments
Gary Fox
Gary Fox

OhhhhhhhhWhat is this "Tabloid" Called???Oh yeahThe Texas Historical Digest

Tunnel Mole
Tunnel Mole

Oh yes, I remember #4 from the old SNL:

"Fred Hartman, male prostitute"

Seriously, lovely roundup!

Tonytwotone
Tonytwotone

preeeetttyyy lights like a DOUBLE RAINBOW!!!!

Mdherna
Mdherna

Check out the Capitol of Texas highway bridge in Austin.

Craigley
Craigley

Fred would be #1 if you would have a night picture.  Maybe you need - no you do need - a day and night comparision.  And then crown an overall champ.

As far as Dallas elvevated road; well thanks for putting that in there becuase those folks are so sensitive, even if an elevated road over a dirty river ain't really a bridge.

James Bailey
James Bailey

It's been about 6 or 7 years since I've been to Matagorda. I didn't know they replaced the bridge and I'm surprised to hear it. There isn't much more than beach and salt grass on the beach side..

Guest
Guest

There is a lot of preserved, federally owned land on the island now.  Hurricane Claudette really wiped out a lot. You might be surprised to see how much private construction (and reconstruction) has gone on down there since you last visited.  

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