Historic bridges are an important part of the heritage, development and transportation system of Indiana. As our state has grown, certain historic bridges have been replaced with modern bridges to accommodate today's higher traffic volumes and larger vehicles. Recognizing the value of Indiana's historic bridges, INDOT commissioned a study to complete an inventory and develop a process to manage and preserve this valued resource.
In coordination with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and the Indiana State Historic Preservation Office, INDOT initiated a historic bridge preservation program. This program is outlined through the Historic Bridges Programmatic Agreement. It provides incentives for bridge owners to help prevent the loss of these important historic resources and provides a process to manage historic bridges in Indiana.
The goal of the historic bridge preservation program is to identify the state’s historic bridges and identify examples for preservation. The project resulted in the following management tools:
- A contextual study of historic bridges in Indiana.
- A listing of bridges eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places (National Register).
- A listing of select historic bridges for preservation.
- A historic bridge database for bridges constructed through 1965.
The results of this inventory along with the project development process guidance documents are available on the Historic Bridge Inventory Summary & Results page.
Projects utilizing federal funds and involving a historic bridge are analyzed to see if the existing bridge will meet the purpose and need of the future traffic conditions expected on that roadway segment. If it does, then rehabilitation of that historic bridge is considered as a viable option for reuse of the existing structure. If the historic structure does not meet the purpose and need for the motoring public, other alternatives are considered.
When a historic bridge is planned for bypassing or replacement, the bridge is offered to any group or individual that may want to take ownership of the bridge and manage or relocate it to another site. Bridges currently available for reuse can be found on the Historic Bridges Marketing Program page.
- Historic Bridges Marketing Program
- Historic Bridge Inventory Summary & Results
- Historic Bridge Preservation Programatic Agreement
- Historic Bridges Program Flier
Environmental Services-Cultural Resources
Indiana Department of Transportation
100 N. Senate Ave, IGCN 642
Indianapolis, IN 46204