North Metro Rail Line bridges springing up
Most rail bridges are imposing structures soaring over vast landscapes.
This is the case with the Skyway Bridge on the North Metro Rail Line. The Skyway Bridge, spanning more than 9,500 feet as it traverses through Denver and Commerce City, is an illustration of a bridge eliminating obstacles in its path by "flying" above them.
Skyway Bridge. Photo by: Ken Charles
The Skyway Bridge spans over York Street, BNSF and Union Pacific railway tracks and spurs, Brighton Boulevard, the Farmers Reservoir & Irrigation Company ditch, Sand Creek and I-270.
The other bridges along the line are much smaller in stature and only separate the commuter rail from roadways or waterways.
The North Metro project will also build rail bridges over Denargo Street, Washington Street, 46th Avenue, Marion Street, Race Street, 88th Avenue, 104th Avenue and 120th Avenue.
Along with these commuter rail bridges, the North Metro Line is also building a vehicle bridge over 70th Avenue for car access to the Commerce City•72nd station and we built three smaller railroad bridges for the BNSF in late 2015.
Special featuresThe bridge over Denargo Street is a double track structure and the bridge over 104th Avenue is twin, side-by-side bridges over one street.
The rest of the bridges are single track bridges. In addition, all of the bridges except the Marion Street Bridge will be constructed with the rails directly attached to the bridge deck eliminating the ballast and ties. This direct fixation track requires less maintenance and allows for a smaller depth of the bridge.
Civil construction of most of the bridges began in early 2016 and the structural component of the bridges over 120th Avenue and 104th Avenue will be the first completed.
Crews will then mobilize to begin laying track on top of the structures. Construction of the 46th Avenue Bridge and the Marion Street Bridge will commence this summer. Regardless of size or purpose, bridges are critical to RTD's rail operations.
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