Columbia River Highway Bridges, Spanning various creeks along Columbia River Highw, Portland, Multnomah County, OR
Spanning various creeks along Columbia River Highw, Portland, OR
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Documentation compiled after 1968.
Survey number HAER OR-56
National Register Number: 83004168
Part of building/structure is in The Dalles, Wasco County, OR.
Significance: The idea of building a scenic highway along the south bank of the Columbia River was conceived by Samuel Hill and other prominent Portland businessmen. Hill took Samuel Lancaster and future State Highway Engineer, Henry Bowlby, to Paris and the Rhine River Valley of Germany to analyze highway development in Europe. With the establishment of the Oregon State Highway Department in 1913, Sam Lancaster was hired to oversee all preliminary engineering proposals and designs prior to pavement construction. State Bridge Engineers C.H. Purcell, K.P. Billner and L.W. Metzger created the innovative bridge designs that were constructed between Troutdale and Eagle Creek. Topographical and scenic values of the gorge were important factors in determining the bridge designs and locations. The Columbia River Highway was the first scenic highway constructed in the United States.
Historic American Engineering Record (Library of Congress)
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