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Brush up on your Pittsburgh trivia and learn about 25 of our famous bridges!
Pittsburgh has more bridges than any other city in the world (sorry Venice) coming in at a whopping 446. That's way too many bridges for a blog to cover, so instead we focused on 25 bridges we think you ought to know. If that sounds like a Rick Sebak title to you, too, his documentary covering the bridges is included below.
Follow our guide to the bridges of Pittsburgh below, find a company that will help you explore these bridges for yourself or simply follow our interactive map to make your own tour.
Need help finding these locations? Follow our interactive map to these 25 locations and craft your own expert itinerary to see them all.
Possibly the city's most recognizable bridges are the Three Sisters Bridges, the only trio of identical bridges in the United States. The bridges cross the Allegheny River and connect Downtown and the North Shore. Each bridge was named in honor of an influential Pittsburgh resident including Roberto Clemente (6th Street Bridge), Andy Warhol (7th Street Bridge) and Rachel Carson (9th Street Bridge).
On Pirates game days, the Clemente shuts down to vehicles and becomes a pedestrian walkway to the ballpark, while the Rachel Carson was closed to host Picklesburgh (one of the top food festivals in the world) in 2022.
Spanning the Monongahela River, the Smithfield Street Bridge stands upon the site of Pittsburgh’s first bridge, the Monongahela Bridge. In addition to being the city’s longest in-service bridge, it is also the oldest steel bridge in the United States and was designated a national historic landmark in 1976 by the American Society of Civil Engineers.
The 40th Street Bridge is an arch bridge that connects Lawrenceville to Millvale. The bridge received its nickname from a young George Washington, who was headed south to the forks of Ohio, and nearly died while crossing the river. The bridge features cast-iron seals of the 13 original colonies.
Built in 1845, the Erskine Bridge is the oldest remaining bridge in Washington County. Designated a historic bridge by the Washington County History and Landmarks Foundation in 1979, the bridge sits just one-tenth of a mile away from West Virginia, making it the farthest west bridge in Pennsylvania.
Built in 1933, this bridge has the longest span across the Monongahela River and is the only cable suspension bridge across Pittsburgh’s three rivers. The towers feature an attractive design that creates a stepped appearance on the interior, making the bridge reminiscent of the art deco period. The bridge carries the namesake of Phillip Murray, the first president of the United Steelworkers of America and honors the labor movement that had an impact on the city of Pittsburgh.
Reopened in 2012 with a modern design, this pedestrian-only bridge crosses the railroad tracks and connects Ellsworth Avenue in Shadyside to the Eastside retail complex.
Formerly the Herr's Island Railroad Bridge, the Washington’s Landing Bridge carries bicyclists from the Three Rivers Heritage Trail to Washington’s Landing, an island where George Washington stayed after his raft capsized in 1753. The landing is only a few minutes from downtown.
The New York Times wrote that Pittsburgh is “the only city in America with an entrance” and that is thanks to the Fort Pitt Bridge. Visitors traveling from the airport into downtown exit from the Fort Pitt Tunnel and onto the Fort Pitt Bridge, where they are greeted by a stunning view of the city.
The bridge crosses the Monongahela River near Point State Park and is historically significant as the world’s first computer designed bowstring arch bridge and the first double-decker bowstring arch bridge.
Speak Like a Pittsburgher: "That's It, Fort Pitt," is common slang to say when an event or game is over. The phrase originates from an advertising campaign from Fort Pitt Beer.
With no official name, this bridge is best described as the Plum Creek Cemetery entrance on Plum Creek Cemetery Lane. Built in 1902, the bridge exhibits the common design and build of the county's stone bridges made popular by county engineer Charles Davis.
The Portal Bridge not only serves as a segue between the Fort Pitt Bridge and the Fort Duquesne Bridge, but it also operates as a “portal” between downtown and Point State Park with a pedestrian bridge crossing directly underneath it. Walking through the archway provides visitors with a great view of the Point and Downtown.
The David McCullough Bridge spans the Allegheny River near the Strip District neighborhood. Built in 1923, it is an arch bridge with large decorative stone pillars. Named after Pittsburgh native David McCullough, an author and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, the bridge listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.
Connecting Bloomfield and Polish Hill, the Bloomfield Bridge is known for its length, colorful graffiti and location over a large ravine. The bridge passes over Dean Field, where Johnny Unitas played football before starting his NFL career.
The Hot Metal Bridge is comprised of two bridge spans―one drivable and one for pedestrians and cyclists. The narrower of the two was originally built to carry molten iron hence the name "hot metal." The bridge connects 2nd Avenue with the South Side.
Built in 1904, the Fort Wayne Railroad Brige is one of the most active railroad bridges in Pittsburgh. It crosses the Allegheny River near the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.
Panther Hollow Bridge is easily recognized by the four bronze panther sculptures at each of its corners. The bridge passes over Panther Hollow in Schenley Park and is a near twin to the Schenley Bridge nearby. Both are located near Oakland, home to the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University.
The Birmingham Bridge took more than 10 years and $30 million to complete. It connects the South Side with Fifth and Forbes Avenues. It was overbuilt because of plans for an inner-city beltway. Some of the ghost ramps are still visible from the south end.
A short distance down the Ohio River from Pittsburgh is the Rochester-Monaca Bridge. Named after a friendly rivalry of the two towns’ high schools, the bridge now reflects the side it is on. (On the Monaca side it is the Monaca-Rochester Bridge.)
Built in 1932, this bridge was the longest concrete arch span in the United States at the time. It carries the Lincoln Highway over the Turtle Creek Valley and connects Pittsburgh to North Versailles. The five arches the bridge is built on is impressive when viewed from the side.
The two tufa bridges in Schenley Park are reinforced concrete bridges with stone facing known as tufa. They are frequently used by pedestrians on the Schenley Park Bridle Path and are located near the Schenley Park Visitor's Center.
Crossing the Allegheny River, the bridge was once referred to as "the bridge to nowhere" because of unfished approach ramps on the northern side. All of the ramps were completed by 1986 and now connect to Pennsylvania Route 65 and Interstate 279.
The William Prom Bridge connects Troy Hill and the Strip District. The design of this bridge is similar to the Washington Crossing Bridge built three years earlier. Widened sections of the sidewalk act as viewing platforms for pedestrians.
The Veterans Bridge is a steel girder bridge that crosses the Allegheny River. It opened in 1988 with seven lanes and was the first step in connecting Downtown and the North Side.
This bridge is well known for its length and rare Wichert truss design. It was the first bridge to use the Wichert design which results in a diamond shape over each pier. The bridge, previously called the Homestead High Level Bridge, was renamed the Homestead Grays Bridge in 2002 to honor the Homestead Grays, a legendary baseball team that dominated the Negro Baseball Leagues during the first half of the 20th century.
The West End Bridge is the first bridge on the Ohio River after the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers merge. The height of the bridge (780 feet) and the views of the city from the bridge are both impressive.
This bridge is one of the most unique in the county because of its variety of spans. This rather long bridge features a trussed arch, Warren deck truss span and crescent arch spans. The crescents are two of only a few in North America.
There's plenty of ways to see The City of Bridges. For starters, I recommend the self-guided Bridges & River Shores Walking Tour from our friends at Pittsburgh Histories & Landmarks Foundation. It gives you a nice overview of Downtown and the North Shore and is easy to squeeze into any itinerary.
Want to tour our bridges from below? Take the Uniquely Pittsburgh Sightseeing Tour aboard the Explorer riverboat. Fantastic photo-ops abound as you tour our three rivers and get iconic bridge shots you can only take from the water.
For the adventurers, I highly recommend the Bridges in the Burgh Tour from Bike The Burgh. This nine-mile ride takes cyclists over four bridges as they discover river trails, new neighborhoods and historic landmarks.