Puget Sound - Tacoma and Gig Harbor, Washington, USA

All photos by Patrick S. O'Donnell. Please do not reuse without permission. This is the second of three sets (see Finishing Touches and Open to Traffic) of Patrick's photos from his July, 2007 visit coinciding with the grand opening of the third Tacoma Narrows Suspension Bridge. These photos were taken during the grand opening festivities. Patrick's comments accompany the photos.

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"The bridge at its most populated. It's estimated 60,000 participated."

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"Here folks appear to be worshipping the main cable to deck clamp at mid-span. They're just admiring the paint job of the worker photographed earlier. This was the most popular spot on the bridge."

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"[The next two photos show a] comparison of the pedestrian/bicycle pathways of the 1950 and 2007 bridges. The 2007 bridge has a 10-foot wide pathway (far right of deck) and a 42-inch high concrete jersey barrier. There's also a 10-foot wide breakdown lane before the first 11-foot wide travel lane. The 1950 bridge has only a three-foot wide pathway and a foot high rail separating it from the narrow 9 1/2-foot traffic lane immediately against the pedestrian/bicycle pathway."

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"Harbor seal."

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"This pier is the only piece of structural steel remaining of the 1940 bridge. The header had to be widened outward of the legs to accept the wider deck of the 1950 bridge."

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"[The next several shots are] from the west (Gig Harbor) end overlooking the pair of bridges following the Opening Ceremonies and Bridge Walk."

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"Anchorage with a deck motion damper and guide. There are just two expansion joints over the entire length of the bridge, each located at the anchorages. This leaves the 5400-foot long deck to float freely from anchorage to anchorage and between the tower legs. These devices channel the deck's movement side-to-side, up and down, and lengthwise against the steel plate."

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"Here is the damper located were the deck passes through the tower legs. In the upper right and lower left corners are catwalks fixed to the tower, providing access to the entry ways within the tower legs. In keeping with the free-floating deck, these catwalks are independent of the deck, hovering just above."

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Patrick goofing off at the podium (sans audience): "The serious pose."

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"Read my lips, no new taxes."

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"I am not a crook."

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"I finally get some alone time with the center span main cable to deck clamp. A police officer pulled up behind me shortly after I snapped this shot and from his cruiser blurted out over his loud speaker 'PICTURE TIME IS OVER!!!'"

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