Color Video of the Huey P. Long Bridge Opened in 1935
The Huey P. Long Bridge in New Orleans was opened to the public in December 1935. It was the first to cross the Mississippi River in Louisiana.
Huey P. Long had been shot in the Louisiana State Capitol Building in September of 1935, three months before the bridge was completed. State officials named the 4.35-mile rail-highway structure in honor of the late Governor.
Designed by Polish-American engineer Ralph Modjeski, the bridge has been described by one newspaper reporter as, "a structure so vaulting and high that it seems to extend from one white, towering Gulf Coast cloud to the next."
The state initially considered 3 methods for crossing the Mississippi River. A tunnel, draw bridge and a high-level bridge. Construction on the current design began in 1932. At its completion, the Huey P. Long bridge was the highest and longest steel railroad bridge in the nation.
Before the bridges 1.2 billion dollar widening project in 2013, the Huey P. Long bridge had 2 very narrow lanes on each side and no shoulders. (Louisianans remember those days) Today, there are three 11 foot wide lanes on both sides with inside and outside shoulders.
As the history of the Governor in which it's named, the Huey P. Long bridge will be around for generations to come.