Historic Bridges

Historic Bridge Surveys and Background

Crawford Bridge Rigid-Connected Bowstring Pony Arch-Truss - Crawford County
Hale Bridge

Our first Survey

In 1995 the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT), in cooperation with the Federal Highway Administration and State Historic Preservation Office, completed an inventory of Iowa’s state, county and city historic roadway bridges constructed prior to 1942.

This first survey work was completed by FraserDesign.

Shell Rock Bridge Shell Rock Bridge, Butler County

OUR Second Survey

In 2011, the Iowa DOT contracted with Louis Berger Group Inc. to expand the 1995 inventory to include bridges constructed between 1942 and 1970. These inventories and evaluations have been intended to be used as planning tools for state and local agency officials as they perform bridge maintenance, rehabilitation and replacement projects.

Many members of the public are also interested in Iowa’s historic heritage and would like to learn more about our historic bridges.

Upcoming Survey 2023

Starting in 2023, the Iowa DOT, with support from the Iowa Highway Research Board, began collaborating with a team of consultants on another bridge survey.

The consultants include:

  • Bear Creek Archeology
  • Historical Link
  • Bentonsport Preservation

This 3rd generation bridge survey will review bridges constructed up through 1985 and reevaluate determinations from the earlier two bridge surveys. We are hoping to conclude the third bridge survey in late 2025.

Looking Ahead

Hale BridgeJulien Dubuque Bridge

If you have historical information about a historic bridge that you would like to share, we will enjoy hearing from you. Consider using DOT.HistoricBridges@iowadot.us to share your information.

Since the 1995 inventory, some bridges had been moved, burned or destroyed by floods or fire. The historic bridges that still stand in the state today are listed on this website.

The bridges listed on the website represent the best information we have about a particular bridge. For a number of reasons, the status of any listed bridge may change. While the database is periodically updated, the information shown may not always be current.


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