Proposed Bridges for The Tacoma Narrows:
||A railroad crossing (probably a trestle, rather than a bridge)
at the Narrows is briefly contemplated by the Northern Pacific
Railroad. A clerk in the NP Land Department named George Eaton
proposes the link between Tacoma (the terminus of the transcontinental
line) and Port Orchard, site of a proposed Puget Sound Naval
||August. Charles A. Cook. A steel
cantilever span similar to the Carquinez Strait Bridge, a 4,500
foot span. Cost: $8 million.
||March. Architect David B. Steinman.
A suspension bridge 4,944 feet long with towers rising 670 feet
above the Narrows, a 2,400-foot center span, two side spans
of 912 feet and another of 720 on the west side connecting to
the Peninsula. $9 million.
||January. Tacoma City engineers.
Designed by C. H. Votaw and Charles E. Putnam. A steel cantilever
truss bridge, composed of five spans on four piers, with a 54-foot
wide roadway allowing two lanes for highway traffic and a railroad
track in the center. Cost: $12 million.
||November. Elbert M. Chandler. A
suspension bridge, with a 1,200-foot central span, a vertical
clearance of at least 196 feet, a deck with a two-lane highway
24 feet wide. Cost: $3 million.
||December. Chandler's new plan calls
for a 7,000-foot long steel cantilever bridge with a 1,200-foot
central span and six spans of about 600 feet each (plus approaches).
The bridge will have 10 piers, two of them on land, two out
of water at low tide, and six piers in about 150 feet of water
on either side of the steel cantilever.
||January. Pierce County Commissioners.
A suspension bridge. Cost: $4 million.
||March. Proctor and Gamble, engineers,
New York. A suspension bridge, 4,944-feet long, with a center
span of 2,400 feet and two side spans of 912 feet each; with
a west approach span of 720 feet. Cost: $4,089,091.
May. WSTBA submits an amended
application to the federal PWA and applies to the RFC for
a loan. The revised application includes a preliminary layout
design by Clark Eldridge for the suspension bridge. The design
represented a center span-to-width ratio of 1 to 66. Although
this represented a dramatically narrower span than the 1 to
47 ratio of the Golden Gate Bridge, Eldridge's 25-foot deep
stiffening truss would give substantial weight to the structure.
June. Public Works Administration
grants funds for the first Tacoma Narrows Bridge, marking
the culmination of over 14 years of community efforts. PWA
award is conditional on the WSTBA hiring outside consultants
for the bridge design. Consultant for the superstructure is
Leon Moisseiff of New York; consultants for the substructure
are Moran & Proctor of New York.
The design by Moisseiff becomes the 1940 Tacoma Narrows
Bridge, "Galloping Gertie."
||June. Tacoma News Tribune re-publishes
the 1929 bridge design by David Steinman. The bridge is described
as 5,560 feet long, with an 18 foot roadway and two 4 foot sidewalks
(26 foot wide deck) with towers 600 feet high.
July - August. Moisseiff completes
revised drawings for superstructure of 1940 Narrows Bridge.
Moisseiff used the same basic specifications for length of
side spans and center span, and for width of roadway (center-to-center
between cables). Moisseiff substituted a solid 8-foot plate
girder support. His design changed the towers to the same
height, 425 feet. Moisseiff also reduced the number of bracing
struts joining the tower legs from Eldridge's 2 below the
deck and 4 above to 2 below and 2 above. His Modernist-Art
Deco design for the towers and anchorages set a new standard
for suspension bridge aesthetics.