Completed Grandjean Bridge
As part of a massive $12-million project to improve and expand New Orleans’s City Park, the WPA built nine concrete vehicular bridges across the grounds between 1936 and 1939.
Located behind the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Grandjean Bridge spans an inlet of Little Lake on a reinforced concrete rigid-frame arch.
Constructed in 1938 to replace an older bridge, the structure reveals modernistic flourishes, including sections of vertical fluting, curving end walls and nautical-like lighting. A stylized WPA logo appears in counter relief across the southeast end post.
Little used in Louisiana, the rigid-frame technology casts the superstructure and substructure monolithically as a single unit so that the load-bearing members are continuous with the vertical supports of the bridge. Of the nine vehicular bridges constructed by the WPA in the park, it is the only with a rigid-frame design.
City Park New Orleans, “New Orleans City Park WPA Bridges Available for Naming and Sponsorship.” Unpublished document, August 2011. Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, “Crossing the Bayou: Louisiana’s Historic Bridges.” Unpublished report, 2015. New Orleans Public Library, WPA Photograph Collection.
Project originally submitted by John Murphey on January 12, 2016.
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