Other People's Rail: Amtrak, commuter rail, rapid transit news & views outside New England

DBM

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Strolling this morning through the quaint and picturesque Chepiawonext Point neighborhood, with its charming vistas of E. Greenwich Harbor, I was pleasantly surprised to come across a pedestrian-only overpass spanning the NEC. Per the plaque it was built in 1987.

There are at most 50 houses in the neighborhood, and the overpass connects it to a very low-density stretch of Route 1. Walking on both sides of the NEC for a little over an hour, I saw 5 other pedestrians--on a beautiful summer weekend, no less.

Which makes me wonder--given there is essentially zero built-in demand for this overpass--that I very well might be the only pedestrian to use this month--was it a mandate from the federal government that it get built? Is there a minimum number of overpasses that have to span the NEC per X miles, in areas where they aren't "naturally" occuring where you have lots of auto bridges spanning it?

It presence was just so surreally perplexing--like something out a Grail quest, I suppose, given how overgrown it is with foliage and how romantically abandoned/neglected it appears...
 

The EGE

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Looking at old aerials, the neighborhood used to have three grade crossings at Neptune, Elisha, and Alger. Perhaps the ped bridge was a compromise when the single road underpass was built? The underpass was in place by 1995 - somewhat earlier than the eliminations during electrification - so it was probably built in 1987 as well.
 

Brattle Loop

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Looking at old aerials, the neighborhood used to have three grade crossings at Neptune, Elisha, and Alger. Perhaps the ped bridge was a compromise when the single road underpass was built? The underpass was in place by 1995 - somewhat earlier than the eliminations during electrification - so it was probably built in 1987 as well.
The bridge is just south of where one of the grade crossings was, so I think it's very likely it was a replacement as you suggest.
 

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