Source #2: rtands.com
DRANO LAKE — Eighteen days after being transferred to a barge and departing Vancouver, the newest bridge on the BNSF Railway’s Columbia River Gorge line is now installed in its new home, carrying trains across the entrance channel where Drano Lake connects to the river.
The new Drano Lake Bridge (officially called Bridge 66.4) is a replacement for a 113-year-old truss bridge that dates back to the original construction of the BNSF line and had outlived its design life.
The bridge was built in an industrial yard in Vancouver’s Columbia Business Center earlier this year and was visible from the nearby public boat launch ramp as the truss structure gradually took shape over a period of months.
The $15 million project is the latest in a series of bridge replacement projects that BNSF has undertaken for the Gorge line in recent years, including a new bridge last year in Home Valley, about seven miles west of Drano Lake, and another in 2017 at the Washougal River in Camas.
The Home Valley and Drano Lake bridges stand out because of their unusual construction history; both were built remotely and floated into place. Most rail bridges are built on-site, retired BNSF spokesman Gus Melonas told the Columbian in April, but the geographic constraints of the two Columbia River sites made that impossible.