New U.S. 81 Rock Island Bridge that pays tribute to Route 66 opens in El Reno

State and local officials on Friday held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to commemorate the opening of a new U.S. 81 Rock Island Bridge in El Reno, Oklahoma, that pays tribute to the original span's Route 66 history. According to the El Reno Tribune, the ceremony for the new $10 million bridge included a performance by the … Continue reading New U.S. 81 Rock Island Bridge that pays tribute to Route 66 opens in El Reno

Captain Creek Bridge in Wellston is reopened after reconstruction

The historic Captain Creek Bridge along an alignment of Route 66 in Wellston, Oklahoma, recently reopened after the state's Department of Transportation improved and reconstructed the span using its original pony trusses. The Oklahoma Route 66 Association on Facebook noted the completion of the project: "Although the original 1932 trusses no longer support the bridge, … Continue reading Captain Creek Bridge in Wellston is reopened after reconstruction

More details emerge on new Route 66 directional signs for Oklahoma

Oklahoma's largest newspaper uncovered new details about the new directional signs that will be installed along Route 66 this spring. The Oklahoma Route 66 Association last month announced the forthcoming signs, including its somewhat altered design. The Oklahoman, based in Oklahoma City, reported this on Monday: The Oklahoma Department of Transportation will replace about 80 … Continue reading More details emerge on new Route 66 directional signs for Oklahoma

Oklahoma invites public comments on Pony Bridge redevelopment

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation is asking for opinions on a future project to rehabilitate the U.S. 281 bridge, aka the Pony Bridge, over the South Canadian River near Bridgeport. The nearly 4,000-foot-long William H. Murray Bridge, built in 1934, is on the National Register of Historic Places and appeared in a scene of the … Continue reading Oklahoma invites public comments on Pony Bridge redevelopment

$22M federal grant will reconstruct Pony Bridge near Bridgeport

The U.S. Department of Transportation has given Oklahoma a $22 million grant to help rehab and reconstruct the historic Pony Bridge near Bridgeport, which includes keeping its distinctive yellow trusses. The Oklahoman newspaper in Oklahoma City reports: “The investment made by the U.S. Department of Transportation to help restore and upgrade Bridgeport Bridge is welcomed … Continue reading $22M federal grant will reconstruct Pony Bridge near Bridgeport

Road crews destroy Horse Creek Bridge in Afton despite local opposition

Work crews for the Oklahoma Department of Transportation apparently destroyed the historic Horse Creek Bridge in Afton in recent days despite substantial opposition from residents and preservationists. A reader of Route 66 News in Oklahoma passed along a friend's photos of the razed bridge. The image was taken from a recently constructed temporary bypass bridge. … Continue reading Road crews destroy Horse Creek Bridge in Afton despite local opposition

What’s being planned for the Pony Bridge near Bridgeport?

I recently received a news release from Route 66 The Road Ahead Partnership about how a historic preservation specialist on behalf of the organization weighed in on several proposals for the William H. Murray Bridge, aka Pony Bridge, near Bridgeport, Oklahoma. That led me to ask: What exactly are the proposals for the Pony Bridge? … Continue reading What’s being planned for the Pony Bridge near Bridgeport?

Oklahoma’s black eye amid upcoming preservation conference

The Tulsa World this week published a preview of the “Are We There Yet? Preservation of Roadside Architecture and Attractions" symposium in Tulsa next month. The April 10-12 event is organized by National Park Service’s National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT), Route 66 Corridor Preservation Program, Tulsa Foundation for Architecture, city of Tulsa, Tulsa … Continue reading Oklahoma’s black eye amid upcoming preservation conference

A trip down Oklahoma’s Route 66, circa 2009

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation recently began uploading videos to Vimeo, including this 17-minute trip down Route 66 in the Sooner State. It's not a recent video, as I noted a few things that apparently have changed since it was shot. The big totem pole at Totem Pole Park near Foyil has been repainted in … Continue reading A trip down Oklahoma’s Route 66, circa 2009

Catoosa to meet with state officials over plan to close Route 66 exit

Officials with Catoosa, Oklahoma, will meet with Oklahoma Department of Transportation officials later this month over a proposal to close a Route 66 exit from westbound Interstate 44. However, ODOT officials, according to The Daily Progress in nearby Claremore, Oklahoma, the proposal is one of several from years ago and is not finalized. They will host … Continue reading Catoosa to meet with state officials over plan to close Route 66 exit