Skip to main content

Bridge Monday; the Roosevelt Lake Bridge and Roosevelt Dam

Back in the early 2010s I frequently visited Gila County Arizona.  Often my travel took me up Arizona State Route 88 (usually for fun) and Arizona State Route 188.  The junction of AZ 88 and AZ 188 holds what was two significant bridging structures of Roosevelt Lake; the Roosevelt Dam and Roosevelt Lake Arch Bridge.


AZ 88 is one of the oldest State Highways in Arizona dating back to 1927.  While the highway was originally intended to be signed as AZ 66 the designation of AZ 88 was ultimately chosen due to US 66 being assigned over what was intended to be US 60 in Arizona.  As originally signed AZ 88 stretched from US Route 80 in Apache Junction east to the first US 180 in Globe.  By 1927 Roosevelt Dam was long completed since 1911 as it was the signature structure of the Salt River Project.  Roosevelt Dam was used as a bridging structure from AZ 88 north to the road to Payson.  This 1927 highway map of Arizona shows the location of Roosevelt Dam on the initial alignment of AZ 88.


Construction of Roosevelt Dam began along the Salt River in Gila County by 1903, as stated above the structure was completed by 1911.  Roosevelt Dam and the Salt River Project were part of the 1902 Reclamation Act which paved the way for later more well known public works projects such as the Hoover Dam.  Roosevelt Dam as originally completed was a completely masonry dam and was the largest of it's type at the time.  


According to Arizonaroads.com the route of AZ 188 from AZ 88 at Roosevelt Dam north to Payson was designated in 1958.  At the time the junction of AZ 88 and AZ 188 was at Roosevelt Dam.   AZ 188 can be viewed in it's originally configuration crossing Roosevelt Dam on the 1961 State Highway Map.



In 1989 an expansion project to raise Roosevelt Dam from 280 feet to 357 began.  Said project was to expand Roosevelt Dam via use of a new masonry cover over the original dam structure.  The Roosevelt Dam expansion project required AZ 188 be shifted onto a new bridge over Roosevelt Lake.  The new Roosevelt Lake Arch bridge was completed by 1992 and remains one of the more scenic bridges in Arizona. 


According to Arizonaroads.com AZ 188 was shifted over what was AZ 88 east of Roosevelt Dam to Globe by 2000.  The change was apparently instigated due to a new ADOT policy about having a highway have both terminus points at the same route.  






Comments

Popular posts from this blog

US Route 199

I was planning on driving US Route 199 for the third time this weekend.  However "external factors" have pushed my visit to US Route 199 back for the time being.  While I can't do a driving log for US Route 199 at the moment I can still write about it's history.


This blog will be slightly different from the usual flair for Gribblenation.  Generally I have a stockpile of my own road photos from which to draw from.  In the case of US Route 199 I was far more focused on hiking photos during my first two visits in 2014 and 2016 than the actual highway.  At some point I will add a series of modern driving log photos but for the time being I will draw from numerous other sources to illustrate US Route 199.


Part 1; the History of US Route 199

Present US Route 199 is a 80.05 mile highway which connects US Route 101 in Crescent City of Del Norte, California northeast to Interstate 5 in Grants Pass of Josephine County, Oregon.  US Route 199 is one of the original US Routes and …

The Tioga Pass Road

Last Summer the Tioga Pass Road over the Sierra Nevada Mountains in Yosemite National Park opened late due to the heavy snow pack from the previous winter.  Approaching the start of July the Park Service finally had cleared the road to Tioga Pass.  That being the case I headed up shortly after the 4th of July holiday during a lull in the tourist season.


The Tioga Pass Road runs from the Big Oak Flat Road at Crane Flat east to US Route 395 ("US 395").  The Tioga Pass Road is largely within the boundary of Yosemite National Park but is maintained by Caltrans as California State Route 120 ("CA 120") east of the Tioga Pass entry station to US 395.  The National Park Service maintained portion of the Tioga Pass Road serve as a implied connection between the two segments of CA 120.  The Tioga Pass Road is the highway mountain pass in California reaching Tioga Pass at 9,945 feet above sea level.



Part 1; the history of the Tioga Pass Road

Tioga Pass first obtained notewort…

Trans-Sierra Highways; California State Route 108 over Sonora Pass

In the fall of 2016 and late summer of 2020 I took a series of drives over mountain passes in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  Both traps culminated by way of crossing over the Sierra Nevada Mountains westbound by way of the 9,624 foot Sonora Pass on California State Route 108.  
California State Route 108 ("CA 108") is a 99 mile east/west State Highway which originates at US Route 395 in the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains.  CA 108 crosses the crest of the Sierra Nevada Mountains by way of the 9,624 foot Sonora Pass and terminates at CA 99 co-signed with CA 132 in downtown Modesto.  CA 108 has a 21 mile unconstructed segment which would extend it to Interstate 5 near Crow's Landing if completed.  
Part 1; the history of Sonora Pass and California State Route 108Much of the early history of Sonora Pass is described by way of two informational plaques at the actual Pass.  The first documented crossing of Sonora Pass was in October of 1841 by way of a course slightly due nor…