Third Spokane Street drawbridge (Seattle) is completed on May 14, 1917.

  • By David Wilma
  • Posted 8/25/2001
  • HistoryLink.org Essay 3512
On May 14, 1917, the Third Spokane Street drawbridge is completed over the West Duwamish Waterway and connects Seattle with West Seattle. This is considered a temporary structure pending the funding and construction of a higher-level bascule bridge. It has two 115-foot spans and clears the water by 36 feet, allowing more river traffic to pass under without opening.

The third drawbridge was built by J. A. McEachern Co. It had a double streetcar track and wood planking. In December 1924, the first of two permanent spans was completed. By 1925, the wooden bridge had deteriorated to the point that it was used only for streetcar traffic. The city council was compelled to make a number of emergency appropriations to keep it in operation.

On January 13, 1928, it was closed to streetcars, and passengers had to disembark and walk across the bridge to continue their journeys. Streetcars began using the new bascule bridge a few days later.


Sources: Myra L. Phelps, Public Works in Seattle: A Narrative History, The Seattle Engineering Department 1875-1975, (Seattle: Seattle Engineering Department, 1975), 35, 36, 49.

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