|Richard I. Bong Memorial Bridge|
Richard I. Bong Memorial Bridge from the Duluth, Minnesota hillside looking southwest toward Superior, Wisconsin and Billings Park.
|Carries||Four lanes of|
|Crosses||Saint Louis Bay|
|Locale||Duluth, MN and Superior, WI|
|Total length||11,800 ft (3,600 m)|
|Opened||October 25, 1985|
The Richard I. Bong Memorial Bridge, also known as the Bong Bridge, connects Duluth, Minnesota, and Superior, Wisconsin, via U.S. Route 2 (US 2). Opened on October 25, 1985, it is roughly 11,800 feet (3,600 m) long, including about 8,300 feet (2,500 m) over water. It crosses the Saint Louis Bay that drains into Lake Superior.
The bridge's namesake, Richard Ira Bong, was a pilot in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II who was named the United States' all-time "Ace of Aces". The bridge was originally to be named Arrowhead Bridge, after the old wood trestle-bascule bridge it replaced.
The bridge is one of the largest public works projects undertaken by the state of Wisconsin. Ayres Associates, an architectural/engineering company based in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, managed the project and designed the 1.5 miles (2.4 km) length of approach bridges. The Wisconsin Department of Transportation designed the channel span (tied arch). Its central suspension section is made of Japanese steel.
The bridge was the scene of a 16-vehicle pile-up on January 27, 2005, in which 10 people were hospitalized and a baby was given an emergency delivery but subsequently died.
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