Rockville Historical Bridge Project
Recent update as of March 10, 2017:
STATE LEGISLATURE APPROVES $100,000.00 IN FUNDS FOR
ROCKVILLE BRIDGE RESTORATION!
March 10, 2017
Thanks to sponsorship by Representative Brad Last, and
with support from Senator Evan Vickers and Preservation
Utah, the Utah State Legislature approved the Town of
Rockville’s request for appropriation funding in the
amount of $100,000 this week.
With these funds added to generous donations by
residents, friends, grants, and through the efforts of our
Historic Bridge Fundraising Committee, we have
successfully raised the matching funds required by the
Federal grant to complete the restoration of our beloved
Fundraising efforts will continue so we may build a
maintenance fund for the bridge. Watch for invitations
and information regarding the upcoming Plein Air event
planned for late April 2017.
THANK YOU &
Mayor Pam Leach
The Town of Rockville has been working towards getting funding to rehabilitate the old historical bridge in Rockville. We would like to help them promote this much-needed project for the Town. The Bridge is a very historical bridge but in order to endure the next several years the town needs to do some re-construction. To find out more information you can read the article at the Deseret News here:
If you can share the information with others that you know who love Rockville like we do you can share the information here and the Town has a button for donations on their website here:
A little History direct from the Towns website:
Constructed in 1924 and spanning the Virgin River in the Town of Rockville, Utah, this single-lane bridge is the only surviving Parker Through Truss type bridge in the State of Utah. The U.S. Bureau of Public Roads designed the Rockville Bridge for the National Park Service. C.F. Dinsmore, an Ogden bridge contractor, erected the bridge on site from prefabricated steel components manufactured by the Minneapolis Steel & Machinery Company. The structural and historical integrity of the bridge have been exceptionally well preserved and on August 4, 1995, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Rockville Bridge performed a valuable role in the development of tourism in southwest Utah. Between 1924 and 1930, the Bridge provided the primary automobile route for visitors to Utah’s National Parks. For early Park visitors, it cut 33 miles off the trek from Zion National Park to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. In 1926 tourists could arrive by train at the south rim of the Grand Canyon and take a daily bus service on a loop tour to Bryce Canyon then on to Zion National Park with a return trip to the Grand Canyon by way of the Rockville Bridge with a stop at Pipe Springs National Monument. When the Zion Mt. Carmel Highway and tunnel was completed in 1928 this more direct and easier route became the favored way to access Zion National Park from the Grand Canyon.
Today the bridge serves Rockville homes on the south side of the Virgin River and recreationists accessing Gooseberry Mesa and Smithsonian Butte. Tourists, as well as historians, cross the bridge daily to visit the Historic Town of Grafton. Rockville faces many challenges from tourism and recreational impacts, with over four million visitors annually descending upon this narrow canyon. The Rockville Bridge is a treasure and important architectural structure. It should be restored and protected for future generations.
The Town of Rockville is considered a rural, residential, and agricultural community, with only 247 residents. Since its founding by Mormon pioneers in 1862, Rockville has maintained the integrity of its historical town plan and has been referred to by historians as “Utah’s last treasure”. Rockville has little commercial activity, so the tax base is relatively small.