Corps demolishes, rebuilds railroad bridge in San Jose

Published Aug. 15, 2011

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District demolished a wooden railroad bridge Aug. 15 that routinely gathers debris during high waters and causes the Guadalupe River to flood the downtown area of San Jose, Calif., 45 miles south of San Francisco.

“They started the demolition of the bridge late this morning and the bridge was brought down around 1 p.m.,” said quality assurance representative Stuart Fermahin. “The debris is now being separated, and pile driving (for the new bridge) is scheduled to start next week.”

Demolition was necessary to make way for a new, more modern railroad bridge near New Autumn Street. The new concrete span will be higher in elevation and have other design features allowing the typically debris-laden water to pass through that stretch of the river without pouring into the nearby businesses.

“The (demolished) timber trestle bridge had remained in place and continued to catch debris during high water events, so it had to go.” said project manager Cameron Sessions. “Most of project was completed in late 2004, but thanks to the (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) stimulus funds, we are finally able to get this done.”

The Guadalupe River project is expected to be completed in 2012.

Todd Plain

Release no. 11-016