10/18/2011

The Denver Viaducts

Have you been in Denver long enough to remember the LoDo viaducts? When you walk around "LoDo" you'll see quite a few buildings with doorways to nowhere on the second floor. Now you know why. The viaducts were built in order to carry vehicle traffic over the Platte River and the railway lines used to supply the warehouse buildings. Most were removed in the early 1990s, though we still have a few other viaducts around town, including on parts of Colfax and 6th Avenue. The LoDo viaducts were famous, though, because they came so close to the old buildings.

You can read more about one of the Denver viaducts in a 1984 publication from the Colorado Dept. of Highways, The Larimer Viaduct Replacement, which provides an environmental assessment of the project. We also have another Dept. of Highways publication investigating the failure of one of the Larimer Viaduct's ramp pier tables: Preliminary Report of Failure Investigation, Walnut Viaduct-Ramp J. To see some great pictures of the viaducts, visit the Denver Public Library.

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