This was an interesting bridge. The old bridge (still visible below the new cable stay bridge) was in really bad shape. It was so bad that trucks had to detour all the way to Bangor and then back down. Considering that the other side of the river (also in some pictures from the bridge) has a paper mill, this was a big problem. They needed a new bridge now!
Originally Posted by Paul Hubbman
So they proposed this cable-stay bridge and the community vetoed it down immediately...they wanted the old design...a suspension bridge. The State had wanted a cheaper cable-stay so at the 11th hour they proposed an observatory in the cable-stay bridge. Because a State Park is located right there, the observatory could be managed by the Dept of Conservation and they could get a few tourists dollars. Instantly the community went for that and we got what we got today.
They did the bridge right though. The grounds are landscaped nicely, and the public areas are festooned with granite because Fort Knox next door is also all granite. They even bought an extra segment of the bridge (the hollow concrete road bed section) and placed that in the park so you can see the cross-section of the bridge.
One more thing should be mentioned...the observatory is 100% wheel chair accessible so no one was left out.
As for the bridge construction...the crane operator who ran one of the tower cranes lives in my town and is a bit of a character. During his lunch breaks he would climb out of his 450 foot cab, climb up another 30 feet, fire up his hibachi and grill lunch.
I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"