The following is a list of 10 bridges that are either located within a Minneapolis park or connect park areas. This is a combination of pedestrian and street bridges that are located all across the city. The number of unique bridges within Minneapolis parks is much greater than what we have captured here, and we hope to continue this series in future to compile a more complete list of park bridges.
#1. Crossing the Lake Nokomis outlet to Minnehaha Creek
The bridge crossing over the Lake Nokomis outlet into Minnehaha Creek shown here is located at the Weir Opening. It is a street bridge with pedestrian/biking lanes that was originally constructed in 1925.
#2. Irene Hixon Whitney Bridge
The Irene Hixon Whitney Bridge connects Loring Park to the Sculpture Garden at the Walker Art Center. The bridge, built in 1988, was designed by Minneapolis-based artist Siah Armajani. The bridge is currently being restored by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, which is repainting the structure and will eventually be lighting it for the first time, according to the artist’s original plans. The revitalized bridge will reopen to the public in late August.
#3. Lowry Avenue Bridge over the Above the Falls Regional Park
The Lowry Avenue Bridge is a steel tied-arch bridge over the Mississippi River that was recently completed in October 2012. However, the original structure in its place was built in 1905 and utilized a 5-span truss bridge design, but has since been repainted, redesigned, reengineered, demolished, and then rebuilt throughout the years. At night, you can see the beautiful multi-color lights that illuminate the arches, typically in blue, but the bridge can be lit up in a number of colors for special events or by request. Next week, you’ll see yellow lights to honor our hard-working pollinators!
#4. Stone Arch Bridge
The Stone Arch Bridge was originally constructed in 1883 as a railway line for the Great Northern Railway, intended to connect the bustling Minneapolis west bank with the St. Anthony east bank, as the cities began merging into one. Though the Stone Arch Bridge ceased to be used as a railroad in 1978, is wasn’t until the early 1990’s that it was repaired and reimagined into the pedestrian and bicycle bridge we know and love today.
#5. Nicollet Island to Boom Island Trestle
Built by Wisconsin Central Railway in 1901, this railroad was constructed to serve the logging industry at Boom Island. It was in 1987 that the bridge was refurbished and designed as a bicycle and pedestrian walkway. However, the bridge still features its original design and structure, allowing a glimpse into its past life.
#6. Martin Olav Sabo Bridge
The Martin Olav Sabo Bridge opened in November 2007, as the first cable-stayed suspension bridge in the U.S. state of Minnesota. The bridge crosses Hiawatha Avenue between 28th and 26th Street East, joining Phase 2 and Phase 3 of the Minneapolis Midtown Greenway and allowing a continuous biking connection across the city. The bridge also links Longfellow and Seward neighborhoods to East Phillips neighborhood. Formerly the Midtown Greenway Pedestrian Bridge, it was renamed in honor of former Representative Martin Olav Sabo, a fourteen-term member of Congress from Minnesota.
#7. Bridge from Bde Maka Ska to Lake of the Isles
Construction of the bridge over the lagoon connecting Bde Maka Ska and Lake of the Isles was completed in 1911. This popular bridge is part of the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway.
#8. Bassett Creek Bridge
The Bassett Creek Bridge is a pedestrian bridge that crosses over the mouth of Bassett Creek as it flows into the Mississippi River. Located just south of the Plymouth Ave. Bridge, it is part of the pathway along the west side of the Mississippi River, which stretches from the North Loop Playground up to Ole Olson Park.
#9. Pedestrian Bridge in Webber Park
This pedestrian bridge crossing over Shingle Creek stands just upstream from the Shingle Creek Falls in Webber Park.
#10. Deer Pen Bridge
There are a handful of pedestrian and street bridges that cross over Minnehaha Creek, as well as above and below Minnehaha Falls. It was hard to choose just one! Deer Pen Bridge, pictured below, a footbridge crossing Minnehaha Creek downstream from the Falls, was originally built in 1939 and rebuilt 1995. The Lower Glen is the area downstream of the Minnehaha Falls before Minnehaha Creek reaches the Mississippi River. There are four footbridges that cross the glen, plus a fifth that crosses the creek in the gorge below the falls.