Main Avenue Bridge Receives Landmark Status


CLEVELAND – Cleveland’s Main Avenue Bridge was designated a Civil Engineering National Historic Landmark for its design and innovation when it opened in 1939.

The Main Avenue Bridge is the second National Historic Civil Engineering Monument in Cleveland. The first is Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, designated in 1979.

Fewer than 230 projects in the United States have received this distinction.

Cleveland News 5.

The Main Avenue Bridge in Cleveland.

Dr Dario Gasparini, Emeritus Professor of Structural Engineering at Case Western Reserve University, was instrumental in researching the project and facilitating the nomination process.

“It was built during the Depression, really in an extraordinarily effective and efficient, economical way,” Gasparini said.

Gasparini said the bridge is a significant achievement in the United States as it was completed in 17 months to build an 8,000-foot-long viaduct.


The Cleveland Memory Project.

The construction of the main avenue bridge.

“So that [the bridge] was a true industrial achievement for Clevelanders and the people of Cuyahoga County, ”he said.

Gasparini said the designation has social significance for Cuyahoga County.

“Truly a great achievement in a way a testament to the industrial might of Cleveland in the 1920s and 1930s,” he said of the approval of funds for its construction during the Great Depression.


Cuyahoga County Engineer’s Photograph Collection | The Cleveland Memory Project.

The main avenue bridge.

The main avenue bridge was a first of its kind.

“It was probably the first in the United States to allow traffic to really pass through a city without having to go through the streets of the city itself. It’s a great 82-year-old resource for the area.” , said Gasparini.

The grand opening of the Main Avenue Bridge Historic Landmark will be celebrated on October 6 at 3:00 p.m. with the unveiling of a plaque at the Cleveland Metroparks water taxi dock on the east side of the river.

RELATED: Have You Ever Wondered Why These Steps And Wall Are At The Corner Of Main Avenue And 9th West?

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