- Meridian Highway Bridge
Meridian Highway Bridge Official name Meridian Highway Bridge Carries Closed, previously 2 lanes of US 81 Crosses Missouri River Locale Yankton, South Dakota and Cedar County, Nebraska Design Vertical lift bridge double deck, Pratt through truss Total length 3013 feet Width 33 feet Longest span 1668 feet Clearance below feet Opened 1924 Coordinates
The Meridian Highway Bridge is a bridge that formerly carried US Route 81 across the Missouri River from the Nebraska border to the South Dakota border. The Meridian Highway Bridge connects Yankton, South Dakota, with rural Cedar County, Nebraska. The Meridian Bridge is a double deck bridge, with the top level having carried traffic into South Dakota from Nebraska, and the lower level having carried traffic into Nebraska from South Dakota.
The dedication ceremony was held on October 11, 1924 and the bridge opened as a toll bridge. It was the last link of the Meridian Highway, which became U.S. Route 81, to be completed. It was designed for use by trains for the lower half of the bridge, vehicular traffic on the upper half, and a lift mechanism to aid river traffic. However, trains never used the lower half, so it was converted to use by southbound traffic, with northbound traffic using the upper half of the bridge and the lift mechanism was removed. In 1953, all tolls were lifted.
The bridge was added to the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP reference number 93000537) in 1993.
On May 9, 2008, a 10-ton gross weight limit was placed on the bridge after an inspection found corrosion on the gusset plates. The bridge will continue to be monitored while temporary repair options are being investigated. It was replaced by the Discovery Bridge upon its opening on October 11, 2008, exactly 84 years after the dedication of the Meridian Highway Bridge. 
- List of crossings of the Missouri River
- Discovery Bridge (Yankton)
- List of historic bridges in Nebraska
- ^ The South Dakota Highways Page: Highways 61 to 100. The upper deck for northbound traffic was terrifying for many people. Just a small guardrail and so high in the air. I saw a farmer-cattle hauler have his friend drive over the river and stop traffic so that he could cross on the lower level where you have steel girders on each side which give comfort and a sense of protection.
- ^ http://www.sdtruckinfo.com/docs/5-9_MerdianBridge.doc Weight restriction imposed on Meridian Bridge
- ^ City of Yankton, SD Discovery Bridge
- ^ Nebraska Department of Roads
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