Community Saves Historic Folsom Bridge


Community Saves Historic Folsom Bridge

I’m Ed Smith, a Folsom personal injury lawyer. Folsom is a city in a rapid process of growth and modernization. However, a group of Folsom residents recently had success with convincing the city to conserve the Gold Creek Bridge, a bit of the city’s rich history.

All About a Bridge

The span is a little known, not commonly used, bridge that takes Orangevale Avenue drivers over a secluded wooded ravine. The bridge is tucked away from the rest of the city so that, even though it is located only two blocks away from the bustling Greenback Lane, those visiting it feel lost in the foothills.

The bridge was constructed about two years prior to the construction of the more famous and far more used Rainbow Bridge that is located a mile east. The Gold Creek Bridge is actually a smaller version of the Rainbow Bridge and was designed by the same architect.

The Bridge’s Function

The Gold Creek Bridge was originally constructed so that farmers could transport oranges from groves in Orangevale to the train station in Folsom. The oranges would be taken from the train station in Folsom to markets around the state. Later on, the bridge was included in the Lincoln Highway, the designated roadway connecting New York and San Francisco preceding highway I-80.

However, the bridge has become less useful as traffic has increased. The bridge is small and the city only allows one vehicle to pass through at a time. Even preservationists admit that nobody trying to get somewhere quickly would want to use it.

Plans to Destroy the Bridge and Opposition

In 2002, the city of Folsom made the decision to tear down the bridge and construct a larger and more modern span to better serve the community. Just before the plan was finalized, though, it was challenged by a small group of people. The group included local retired Caltrans engineers, Lincoln Highway history enthusiasts, and members of the Heritage Preservation League of Folsom


The group was able to convince the city and state to give historic status to the bridge. The city set aside its plans for a modern bridge and investigated options for improving the existing structure. Those working on the project reported that it was difficult because no construction plans for the structure were available and they needed to drill into the concrete to learn about how the bridge was built.

An Improved Bridge

Ultimately, about half of the bridge was rebuilt and the rest was left in its original state. Improvements to the bridge greatly increased its strength. The city had previously not allowed fire trucks to cross the bridge for fear that it would collapse. However, during the opening ceremony for the renovated historic structure, the city drove five fire trucks across it to prove its stability.

Folsom Personal Injury Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Folsom personal injury lawyer. If you, or a person you know has been injured in a car collision, call me at (707) 564-1900 to receive free and friendly advice. If you are outside the area, you can also reach us at (800) 404-5400 toll-free.

Since 1982, people in the Folsom area with cases that involve wrongful death and personal injuries have trusted me to help them recover the money they are legally owed.

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Image Attribution: Wikimedia Commons

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