This blog was revised on 12/31/2017
The Roosevelt Road (12th Street) Bridge (200 West; 1200 South) crosses the south branch Chicago River east to west 2.9 miles from the river mouth. The current bridge is the fourth bridge at this location. It opened on November 22, 1930. It was extensively rehabbed in 1995. It is a metal rivet connected Pratt deck truss movable double leaf bascule (fixed trunnion) and approach spans: metal stringer ( multi beam ) fixed. The largest span is 204 feet. Total length is 257.4 feet. Deck width is 71.8 feet. There is one main span and 2 approach spans.
The bridge is unique for its round bridge keeper houses.
The bridge was designed by the Division of Bridges and Viaducts City of Chicago. The superstructure contractor was Kettler Elliot Erection Company Chicago. Fitzsimmons and Connell Dredge and Dock Company was the contractor for the east substructure . M.E.White Company was the western substructure contractor. Norwood and Noonan Company was the electric contractor.Bridge tender houses contractor was C.E. Carson Company. Construction costs were $2,050,116
In the 1850’s, property owners in the area around 12th Street raised $2000 to build a bridge across the south branch Chicago. They received both city approval and a $1000 appropriation. The new bridge opened in the fall of 1855. It was a wood hand operated pontoon swing bridge. The designer is unknown. It was constructed by City Superintendent John Van Osdel. This First 12th Street Bridge was removed in 1868.
In 1868, the south branch was widened. The new second 12th Street Bridge opened on April 28, 1868. The bridge was constructed under the Supervision of James K. Thompson, City Supervisor of Streets. It was a swing hand operated wood and iron bridge. It had an improved turntable and refined Howe truss design.
It was designed and built by Fox and Howard. Construction costs were $44,500. The bridge was removed In 1887.
The third 12th bridge opened in June, 1887. It was an all steel electric powered swing bridge. It was the first all steel bridge built by the City of Chicago. It was 220 feet long and 49 feet wide. Designer was unknown. Superstructure Contractor was Chicago Forge and Bolt Company. Substructure Contractor was FitzSimons and Connell Company. Construction costs were $101,010. There was an extensive system of viaducts on either side of the bridge.
In 1889, the bridge was involved in a crash with a passing vessel.
In 1899, the bridge was replanked and replaced
In 1902, there were upgrades of the protection piers, boiler machinery and floor beams and stringers.
In 1908, a new danger signal system was installed; locks, spider rods and the engines were serviced. Boilers were overhauled.
In 1910, the steam plant was rebuilt and boilers were overhauled.
In 1913, the iron works were repainted Nine clumps of 13 pilings were added to the protection piers. The boilers were overhauled.
In 1920, the bridge was closed and later removed.
Current bridge inspection as of 10/2011
Deck Condition Rating. Good. 7 out of 9
Superstructure Condition Rating Satisfactory 6 out of 9
Sub structure Condition Rating. Fair. 5 out of 9