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New Image: Alley 131, The MacArthur Bridge, St Louis

The MacArthur Bridge, which was once part of historic Route 66, connects St Louis, MO to East St Louis, IL across the Mississippi River. The 100 year-old bridge towers over the industrial south side of St Louis, where this was shot and meanders through the run-down buildings in the area – Alley 107 is the same bridge a half mile further inland.

I’ve been to this spot a few times over the years, and in fact shot from this vantage point in 2008, but was not happy with the results. I couldn’t let this majestic tribute to rust just sit there, so in 2009 while in St Louis, I revisited the location. The top level, built for cars, is abandoned – the decay being so severe in parts that cars would just drop through. The lower level still allows trains to chug through it. You can see a white light trail on the left, as a train rolled through right when the exposure was ending – one of the very few times I’ve allowed a light trail (other than stars) in my alley images.

While researching the bridge, I found an old postcard of the bridge in its glory days. (It was then called the Municipal Bridge)

And once again, it 2nd Fridays Open Studios in the Chicago Arts District. If you live in the city, please drop by for some art and alcohol! 6-10pm, March 12

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