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Last Issue’s Project Puzzler No Pipe Dream for DC

Our mystery bridge was the famous Washington, D. C. Pipe Arch Bridge built by Captain Montgomery Meigs in 1860. It was part of an 18.6-mile long aqueduct to bring water from the Potomac River above the Great Falls into Washington. 

 Washington, D. C. Pipe Arch Bridge  
 Washington, D. C. Pipe Arch Bridge 

Meigs was a West Point Graduate of the class of 1836 who had also designed the Cabin John masonry arch bridge as part of the aqueduct project. During the Civil War he was appointed Quatermaster General of the Army and also oversaw the completion of the Capitol Dome.

 General Montgomery Meigs
 General Montgomery Meigs

The two pipe arches are 4 ft. in diameter (with a wall thickness of 1.5 inches) and span 200 ft. with a rise of 20 ft. Open spandrel arch bracing of wrought iron supports the roadway deck.

 Pipe Arch Bridge
Pipe Arch Bridge