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Photos: Monroe Street structure bridges past and present

The life of the Monroe Street Bridge spans much more than just the Spokane River. Destroyed by fire and resurrected as a steel structure in the early 1890s, it was rebuilt with concrete in 1911. In its planning stages, the concrete bridge was hailed in an Aug. 29, 1909, Spokane Daily Chronicle article as “one of the notable edifices of the world.” Designed by Spokane city engineer J.C. Ralston, the bridge cost $500,000 and took one year and 25,000 yards of concrete to build. It was known at the time as the longest and highest concrete span in America. In June 1948, photographs of the bridge were seen across America as it graced the cover of the Saturday Evening Post. After a major refurbishing and grand reopening in 2005, the bridge remains a nostalgic attraction at the foot of Spokane Falls. It measures 826 feet long and 281 feet wide, with its deck 135 feet above the river.

–Jesse Tinsley



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