Replacing an Icon

by Daniel B. Irwin, P.E., Senior Engineer; Modjeski and Masters Inc., Mechanicsburg, PA,
Kevin W. Johns, P.E., Senior Project Manager; Modjeski and Masters Inc., Mechanicsburg, PA,


Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 2019, Vol. 89, Issue 2, Pg. 42-46,48-51


Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Since 1852, the Portage Viaduct has carried a rail line across the Genesee River Gorge, near the town of Portageville, New York. First made of timber, then replaced with a wrought iron structure after a destructive fire, the crossing became an icon for the community. Tasked with replacing the viaduct, bridge engineering firm Modjeski and Masters worked with the community and the Norfolk Southern Railway Co. to create a new iconic arch bridge for the gorge.

Subject Headings: Railroad bridges | Arch bridges | Bridge engineering | Viaducts | Rail transportation | Rivers and streams | Wood | Iron (material) | New York | United States

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