Florida Avenue Bridge Replacement
Overview

Narrow. That was the word used to describe the marine opening of the bridge formerly crossing the Inner Harbor-Navigation Canal at Florida Avenue. This Strauss trunnion bascule bridge provided a meager 90-ft. opening – a tight fit for today’s hulking maritime traffic. The Port of New Orleans had plans to replace the bridge. Their vision: a state-of-the-art vertical lift providing 300 feet of navigational clearance.

As active partners, Modjeski and Masters (M&M) worked closely with The Port during conceptual design. We completed a feasibility study and evaluated alternative design solutions and related costs. Next, our experienced structural, electrical, and mechanical designers developed final plans for the preferred alternative: a 342-ft vertical lift bridge carrying one railroad track, two roadway lanes, and one sidewalk. We brought an added dimension to the project: on-site observation. In addition to providing construction support from the office, personally-invested M&M team members set up field residency for monitoring construction. Sporting a fresh coat of cobalt blue paint, the streamlined Florida Avenue Bridge was completed in 2005. However just a few years later, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, M&M was asked to perform an emergency evaluation by the Port.

Bridge Geometry
Length of Main Span 342 Feet
Horizontal Clearance 300 Feet
Vertical Clearance 156 Feet
Lanes/Tracks on Structure Two Lanes; one track; and one sidewalk

This project continues our decades long relationship with the U.S. Coast Guard altering obstructive bridges under the directives of the Truman-Hobbs Act.