Community effort renews Rainbow Bridge

Local groups worked together to upgrade Rockwell City landmark

It is now possible to sit in the middle of a historic bridge east of Rockwell City and eat your lunch on a nice afternoon.

There’s no need to worry about getting hit by a vehicle. The old Rainbow Bridge hasn’t carried any traffic since 1981. It sat unused for decades.

But this year it was transformed from an abandoned bridge to a welcoming island of tranquillity thanks to an effort that involved multiple groups.

Leading the way was Rockwell City Revitalization, a coalition of citizens working to improve the community. Assisted by many other volunteers, including local Boy Scouts, the group completed the project which included cleaning up the area and putting down new gravel in the approach to the bridge.

The picnic table on the bridge was donated by the family of Margaret Feld.

Anderson Construction, of Rockwell City, donated a big rock that sits near the bridge. A metal plaque on that rock describes the history of the bridge.

That history began in 1915, when the 60-foot-long span was built by Iowa Bridge Co., of Des Moines. It was designed by James Barney Marsh. The bridge closed in 1981, when heavier vehicles made it unsafe to use.

The bridge could have become a decaying ruin. but the work of Rockwell City Revitalization, the Boy Scouts, the family of Margaret Feld and Anderson Construction have resulted in a unique attraction. Those groups have our gratitude for taking on this project.

We encourage people to stop and check out the rejuvenated Rainbow Bridge site.


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