Friday, June 12, 2015

The Tulsa Bridge Tour


Run from Blue Rose Cafe to River West Festival Park and back, followed by a short out and back to the 21st Street Bridge. 5 miles, more or less.

The river trails are closed from about 36th to 25th for the construction of Tulsa's Gathering Place. I miss not being able to run down to the Blue Rose area from my house, so on Thursday evening, Sophie and I drove down to the restaurant parking lot for a run along the picturesque riverfront.

After running North, we crossed the Arkansas River on the new I-244 Pedestrian walkway. It's technically not open to the public yet because their still paving the path that connects it to the established trails on the East bank. But the bridge itself is finished. Its easy enough to get to it if your okay with dirt and dust for a few hundred feet.

I love the design. It feels very futuristic and while carrying some Art Deco elements. This is Tulsa after all.

The walkway is on platform below the bridge, and it looks like the planned pedestrian rail to Oklahoma City will travel under here as well.


Once on the West bank, we traveled South toward the old 11th street bridge. Built in 1911, it was the original bridge out of town (via Route 66) and is on the national register of historic places. Unfortunately, it has been deemed unsafe for even pedestrian traffic. It's probably the most elegant concrete bridge I've ever seen.

!-244 Bridge on the left, 11th Street Bridge on the right.

Passing under the 11th street bridge, we came to the Southwest Boulevard Bridge. It replaced the 11th street bridge. As you can see from the photo, it cannot be accused of possessing aesthetic value.

11 Street Bridge on the left, SWest Boulvard Bridge on the right.

We ran all the way out to River West Festival Park and turned around. Back at the parking lot, I decided to run a short leg to the 21st Street bridge, probably my favorite operating Tulsa bridge. It was built in 1932.

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