Wingwalls: Importance and Repair

Many stone arch bridges were designed with wingwalls. The wingwalls are essentially retaining walls that keep the soil along the stream from slumping into the stream. Obviously, having the soil slump into the stream is undesirable, as it can make a wreck of the road. However, for some stone bridges, the stone walls that formContinue reading “Wingwalls: Importance and Repair”

The Story of the Neer Bridge in Cowley County, Kansas

Cowley County is famous for its stone arch bridges. From Dexter’s massive triple-arch Pudden Bridge on the National Register of Historic Places to the tiny, poorly documented Stalter Bridge near Rock, Cowley County, Kansas, features a wide array of stone arch bridges in every shape and size. Many of these bridges have an interesting taleContinue reading “The Story of the Neer Bridge in Cowley County, Kansas”

Stone Arch Bridge Restoration and Pudden Bridge: Part 1

Restoring a stone arch bridge can sometimes be something of a challenge. Often the results are worth the effort. Restoring a stone arch bridge may even cost less than replacing the bridge. The question is how do you restore a badly damaged bridge?   Pudden Bridge Example Let’s look at Pudden Bridge as an exampleContinue reading “Stone Arch Bridge Restoration and Pudden Bridge: Part 1”

Two Benefits of Cutwaters

An interesting feature of many multi-span stone arch bridges is cutwaters — protrusions of stone attached to piers that improve the hydraulic properties of the bridge. Cutwaters not only help to prevent scour, they also prevent the accumulation of debris against the piers. Benefits of Cutwaters: Debris Prevention Bridges without cutwaters on the upstream facesContinue reading “Two Benefits of Cutwaters”

The Weak Point of an Arch: The Arch Faces

The arch faces are the most vulnerable point of a stone arch bridge. The upstream faces in particular are more easily damaged, as they are exposed to impacts from debris. Why the Facing Stones of the Arch are Vulnerable The individual arch stones in the arch faces tend to twist out of the arch surprisinglyContinue reading “The Weak Point of an Arch: The Arch Faces”