18 thoughts on “Ross Island Bridge, 1926

  1. As part of the new light rail to Tigard and Bridgeport, they’re finally going to fix that mess that’s the west approach to the Ross Island Bridge. What we have is likely not the original design, but it sure isn’t user friendly. What I do like is the way that drivers have worked out a zipper method for merging traffic onto the bridge during rush hour.

  2. Mike: if I may…did the old Lincoln plant produce electricity as well as steam for the downtown office buildings?

  3. Trimet intends to rebuild the west approaches of the Ross Island as part of the proposed Barbur light rail line to Tualatin. The current spaghetti of approaches makes it difficult to route the rails onto Barbur, so both Trimet and motorists can benefit if they can untangle that mess.

  4. The Lincoln power plant did produce both electricity and steam. They wanted to shut down the plant long before they did but couldn’t because of long term contracts for steam. .

  5. Yeah, I don’t see the barricade in igor’s photo. As for the ramps now, the hope is that funding can be found to re-do them as a separate, parallel project. The plan is to have MAX run on Barbur Blvd, which will mean that the ramps won’t be a direct part of the project.

  6. Mike: I don’t think it was I-5 that led to the current mess on the west end of the Ross Island Bridge. Based on photos like this one (https://tinyurl.com/n9kvsao) and others on Vintage Portland, it looks like today’s configuration dates back to the late 1940s. I don’t think I-5 came along until the mid-1960s.

  7. I can’t figure out how to post a picture here but if I could I would post a 1950 photo of the west end ramps from Efiles portland that shows my point.

  8. Anyone who thinks adding more lanes to a freeway hasn’t been in that mess around Tacoma. 5 lanes each way and still congested. My point being that all that happens when more lanes are added is eventually they become congested again. I’m actually not against them I’m just saying. See as a middle to old age white guy I’m supposed to be against anything the city does to try and discourage driving. Oh well.

  9. I was combing the photo for details when I noticed what appear to be two horses, or mules, under the bridge, in the center of the picture.

  10. John Killen’s comment above is correct, the west end ramps were under construction by the late 40’s well before the Interstate system was even announced, much less built.

    Here are the current ramps when still fairly new in 1952, over a decade before I-5 would come through.

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