You wouldn’t normally associate Texas with suspension bridges, would you? Actually, there are a couple of those bridges in the Hill Country and they’re both in San Saba: Beveridge Bridge and Regency Bridge.
Regency Bridge is also known as the “Swinging Bridge” because is sways. I don’t know about you, but the idea terrifies me. When we went to see the bridge, my husband walked half-way along without batting an eyelid. I, on the other hand, was petrified because I have a fear to heights. My legs refused to go beyond the steel tower. I had to zoom in to take pictures of my husband on the bridge.
Oh, and the wind blowing through the steel cables makes an eerie sound.
The history of the Regency Bridge
Regency Bridge straddles the Colorado River and connects the counties of San Saba and Mills. Although it’s been bypassed by paved farm roads, the bridge was vital for farmers and ranchers for going to market.
The first bridge was built in 1903, but it collapsed in 1924. According to local records, a boy, a horse, and some cattle died as a result. The bridge was rebuilt but was washed away by a flood in 1936. A crew of workers rebuilt the bridge in 1939. It was repaired since then, with the latest facelift being in 2014.
Regency Bridge has one lane and is located at the intersection of San Saba Country Road 137 and Mills County Road 433. It’s near a tiny community named Regency.
The bridge’s overall length, including both approaches, is 403 feet. The main span in 343 feet long between towers.
The wooden deck is 16 feet wide.
It’s a cable suspension bridge supported by permanent abutment towers. The cables are anchored to the ground into concrete behind each welded steel tower.
The cables are 3 ¼” in diameter are consist of 475 strands of No. 9 gauge galvanized wire.
The wooden roadway is supported on timber stringers and steel floor beams hung from steel suspension rods.
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