Dinkey Bridge

Lost Historic I-Beam Bridge near Iowa State University Campus
Ames, Story County, Iowa

Click the Photo Above to See All Photos of This Bridge! All structure and demolition photos taken by Brad Grefe, used with permission.
Name Dinkey Bridge
Built By Fort Dodge, Des Moines & Southern Railway
Contractor Pittsburgh-Des Moines Steel Company
Currently Owner None (Bridge has been removed)
Length 206 Feet Total
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 15 Feet (Estimated)
Superstructure Type I-Beam
Substructure Type Steel Pile
Date Built 1940
Date Removed August 2010
Demolisher Mike's Excavating of Madrid, Iowa
Traffic Count 0 (Bridge is removed)
Current Status Lost
Significance Local Significance
The line here was constructed by the Ames & College Railway in 1891. The A&C became a part of the Fort Dodge, Des Moines & Southern in 1906.
The goal of the line was to connect the Iowa State University campus to downtown Ames.
The railroad was replaced by buses in 1929 and the property was used sparingly to bring goods in to ISU.

The Dinkey Bridge is the crossing of Ioway (formerly Squaw) Creek on a former trolley line.
Built in 1940, the bridge seems to have had some connection to the Manhattan Project. Iowa State University was one of several locations working to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons.
In the later years of its life, it was used as a study place and art gallery by local students. Many inspirational messages were written on it.
Union Pacific offered to sell it to the city of Ames, but Ames turned it down multiple times due to the cost of repairing it (which was a fraction of the cost of tearing it down).
Despite local protest and angered college students, it was removed by Mike's Excavating in August 2010.
Today, it is just a big blank area where the nice bridge once existed. It is too bad Ames chose not to save it, as it could have made a nice connection from downtown Ames to campus.
The author has ranked the bridge as being locally significant, due to the design. However, the bridge was deeply rooted in the culture of the region at the time of demolition.

Article about the demolition


Source Type


Build Dates Luke Harden Research

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