Poor Old Bridge

manette bridge.jpg

The Opening Day of The Manette Bridge

There are a few things that scream Bremerton

First, is the shift change whistle at the shipyard. It literally screams

As for images, the Hammerhead crane comes to mind.

Other than that, it’s got to be the bridge.

The poor, old Manette Bridge.

Like people later in life slow down and stop doing yard work and changing their own oil, the state Department of Transportation will implement weight restrictions on the Manette Bridge next week. (Read the story here)

Described as “both structurally deficient and functionally obsolete” by DOT, construction on a new bridge will begin in summer 2010 and will be finished 2012. (Read the DOT project page here)

The new bridge will no doubt be safer, provide more space for pedestrians and bicyclists and inspire less anxiety in those passing over Port Washington Narrows.

But chances are the new bridge will inspire less in general. It’s more than a bridge, but a link to the past, to a different time, back when Bremerton was a bustling port city and Seattle was a working class town.

Ploy Studios, the T-shirt shop/art gallery in downtown, has been producing striking T-shirts with the image of the bridge.

Ploy Co-owner Michael Abegg said even when the old bridge goes the way of affordable rent the shop will continue to produce the shirts.

“That’s what everyone remembers,” Abegg said. “You always see it coming to Bremerton.”

Abegg even remembers it as the first bridge he drove over when he learned to drive.

For more info on Ploy Studios, click here.

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