Pennsylvania Railroad || Manayunk Bridge Trail

Railroad: Manayunk Bridge, Pennsylvania Railroad
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Date: c. 1928
Credit: Aero Service Corporation, photographer, The Library Company of Philadelphia, OBJ_digitool_61620_[Pennsylvania Railroad, Manayunk Bridge, Spanning Schuylkill River & Green Lane, Manayunk, Philadelphia.]

An aerial view shows the Pennsylvania Railroad’s Manayunk Bridge spanning the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This route was a branch line that opened in 1884 and primarily provided commuter rail service between Philadelphia and Norristown. To accommodate heavier trains and locomotives, the railroad built this concrete arch bridge in 1918.

Commuter business waned on the Schuylkill Valley Branch in the 1950s, and the railroad cut passenger service north of Manayunk in 1960. A major reorganization of the rail industry in the decades that followed left the branch line and this bridge with the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA). Service over the Manayunk Bridge ended in 1986 due to its unsafe conditions, and SEPTA later removed the track.


Trail: Manayunk Bridge Trail
Trail length: 0.4 miles
Date: September 11, 2021
Credit: Robert L. Sartain, courtesy of the photographer

Following extensive inspections and refurbishments, the Manayunk Bridge Trail opened in 2015 and connects the Cynwyd Heritage Trail and the Schuylkill River Trail across the Schuylkill River for pedestrian traffic.

The Schuylkill River Trail is a partially completed multi-use trail along the banks of the Schuylkill River in southeastern Pennsylvania. Many sections utilize the former Schuylkill Branch of the Pennsylvania Railroad. The trail is a part of the Circuit Trails Coalition, a network in the greater Philadelphia area that aims to create more than 800 miles of trails.

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