Falls Park Rail Bridge

Girder Bridge over Big Sioux River and Sioux Falls
Sioux Falls, Minnehaha County, South Dakota

Click the Photo Above to See All Photos of This Bridge!
Name Falls Park Rail Bridge
Built By Great Northern Railway
Contractor Unknown
Currently Owned By BNSF Railway
Length 680 Feet Total, 52 Foot Main Spans
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 40 Feet (Estimated)
Type Through Girder and I-Beam
Date Built 1947
Traffic Count 4 Trains/Day (Estimated)
Current Status In Use
In 1888, the Watertown & Sioux Falls Railway was charted to build between Watertown and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

The railroad was graded in 1888, however wouldn't build the line until 1904, when the Sioux Falls to Colton portion was built.

In 1905, they extended to Rutland, and by 1907 reached Watertown.

The railroad was absorbed by the Great Northern Railway in 1922.

The line became part of Burlington Northern in a 1970 merger which involved rival Northern Pacific.

By 1972, BN abandoned from Watertown to Hayti, and abandoned from Wentworth to Hayti in 1980.

The BN became a part of the BNSF Railway in 1996, following a merger with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway.

The line currently connects to a spur in Wentworth, and is known as the Madison Subdivision.

This bridge is by far the most scenic in Sioux Falls, and perhaps in the entire state of South Dakota.

The bridge features 8 Through Girder spans crossing the main diversion channel, which avoids the falls themselves.

These girder spans are likely older than 1947, however 1947 is the only record that can be found.

However on this bridge, the less interesting spans cross the more interesting body. 8 I-Beam spans were built in 1947 to take the place of a wooden trestle, crossing the Sioux Falls.

The granite falls are a tourist attraction, and the bridge finds itself in the background of many photos of them.

The photo above is an overview from the south end.

Big Sioux River Railroad Bridges

Upstream IC Big Sioux River Bridge
Downstream BNSF Big Sioux River Bridge/td>

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