Written by Shirley T
Sunday, 12 September 2010 00:00
Some call it 'Pennybacker Bridge' and others name it as '360 Bridge'. Either name is referring to the rustic charming steel bridge on Capital Of Texas Highway (or Loop 360 Hwy) near Westlake neighborhood in Austin.
Named after Percy Pennybacker who was an outstanding bridge engineer for the Texas Highway Department, the bridge project was initiated in 1979 utilizing the structures fabricated in Korea. It was opened for traffic on 3 December 1982.
An extraordinary design with no part of structure touches the water, Pennybacker Bridge is 1150 feet (351 m) long accommodating the central arched span of a 600-foot or 183 m. Running across Lake Austin or a stretch of Colorado River, this unique design allows water recreational water to take place smoothly without columns.
The stretch near Pennybacker Bridge is one the most scenic urban road in Austin with the landscape of rolling hill and calm Lake Austin against the green of suburb and blue sky.
To enjoy the best view of Pennybacker Bridge, stop at a small parking bay several yards before the bridge along 360 Loop north. Then, take a hike on a rocky trail and one would be rewarded with a fantastic panoramic view of Pennybacker Bridge and a far sight of Austin city skyline. This spot of an overhanging top rock provides a great landscape of south, east and west corners. It is also overlooking Lake Austin where one could see boating and water skiing. The wind on top of the hill is breezy and relaxing. Good to arrive in evening with a blanket and a picnic basket to watch sunset. Do not forget the camera.
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