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Bridges of the Byway – Ohio River Scenic Byway
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Ohio River Scenic Byway / Bridges of the Byway

Bridges of the Byway

Counting ferries and dams, pedestrian, train and auto bridges, all told there are dozens of Ohio River crossings along or near the Ohio portion of the Ohio River Scenic Byway. Many of them have storied histories all their own that enhance the experience of travelling along (and across) the river. Below are just some of the highlights.

Between East Liverpool, Ohio and Chester, WV is the first Ohio River Bridge along the Byway. It is the Jennings Randolph Bridge. Completed in 1977, it is the largest example of a Platt truss bridge in North America.

It is impossible to miss the sleek and dramatic Veterans Memorial Bridge at Steubenville. Opened to traffic in 1990, the 2,000 foot span has a towering central structure that’s visible for miles.

Crossing into Wheeling is a former world record holder. Construction of the Wheeling Suspension Bridge began in 1847, and when the job was done, it was the longest suspension bridge in the world. Also the first bridge to cross the Ohio River, the photogenic bridge is still open to traffic.

For a rare experience, be sure to catch the Sistersville Ferry in the Monroe County community of Fly. In 2017, the ferry will mark the beginning of its third century in service. It is the only ferry crossing into West Virginia across the Ohio River.

In 2008, the Blennerhassett Island Bridge opened, altering traffic patterns in the Ohio Valley by completing Corridor D of the Appalachian Highway System. The award winning structure is over 4,000 feet long and is just south of Belpre in Washington County.

Also completed in 2008, the Bridge of Honor, also known as the Pomeroy-Mason Bridge offers a graceful modern design by daylight. Evening is an even better time to visit the span as vibrant purple lights illuminate the bridge’s cables and towers.

Crossing into Greenup, Kentucky, is the Jesse Stuart Memorial Bridge. Carrying a highway right across the top of the Greenup Locks and Dam, this unique river crossing was finished in 1984.

At Portsmouth, Ohio is the Carl Perkins Bridge. Originally opened in 1988, the span is named for a US House of Representatives member from the Bluegrass State, not a blue suede shoe enthusiast.

In Brown County is the second ferry that crosses the river along the Scenic Byway. The ferry has been in continual operation since 1797.

Cincinnati has several bridges connecting it to Kentucky. The Newport Southbank Bridge is open to pedestrians only. The John H. Roebling Suspension Bridge is also open to pedestrians and is used by sports fans to get access Reds and Bengals games, thanks to its proximity to some of the area’s professional sports facilities.

The last crossing before the end of the Ohio Scenic Byway is the third ferry crossing. Anderson Ferry in Hamilton County has been carrying traffic since 1817. It’s located less than 10 miles west of Cincinnati.

Remember– these are just a small sample of the Ohio River Crossings you will find on your own adventure of discovery along the Ohio River Scenic Byway.