SMART offering to give away Haystack Landing bridge over Petaluma River

Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit is offering to give away the aging Haystack Landing railroad bridge in Petaluma to make way for a new span for the future commuter rail line.

The single-track, swing bridge was placed at its location over the Petaluma River near the current Highway 101 overpass in 1904 for use by the Northwestern Pacific Railroad.

But because the span does not fit SMART’s needs, the rail agency is seeking applicants to remove the historic span and relocate it, and in the future maintain it to its historical standards.

No surprise, the agency’s proposal notes that the project involves “technical difficulties” and “substantial costs.” Another consideration is the agency wants the span removed by mid-September.

SMART plans to launch commuter rail service at the end of next year. The replacement span at Haystack Landing will be a used drawbridge from Galveston, Texas.

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