Bridge, December 1979.
Abandonment of the 56 year-old Hope Street Bridge will ring down the curtain
of a bit of history that was peculiar to this town. The proposal to eliminate the
structure rather than expend more than $77,000 on repairs will be up for a town-
wide vote at the March Town Meeting.
The bridge was constructed in 1902 by Giacomo Cenedella, contractor, at a
cost of $37,500. It is 1214 feet long, and its steel work extends for 695 feet. he
bridge surface is wooden, and wooden sidewalks line both sides, with a heavy iron
railing protecting users along its whole length.
The bridge is believed to be the only one of its type in New England. It enables
traffic to flow over the Grafton & Upton Railroad tracks, used by Draper
It links two sections of town as the fastest means of access. Another route is
available over the Freedom Street Bridge, around the Draper plant, and from
Mendon Street, over a dirt road which leads to the large Draper factory parking lot
off Hope Street.
Traffic counters in operation on the Hope Street Bridge have totaled up the
passage of 705 vehicles during an average 24-hour period. This contrasts with
1783 vehicles over the Freedom Street Bridge.
The committee assigned to investigate the situation came up with a detailed
report, proposing to build an extension of Adin Street that would cross the G & U
tracks, affording entry into the Hope and Cemetery Street area.
The Milford Daily News article above then gives the complete report of the
committee, detailing the causes and degree of deterioration of the bridge, cost of
repair and upkeep, and alternatives to saving the bridge. The full report can be
found at the Bancroft Memorial Library or the Milford Library in the article printed
in the Milford News on June 16, 1958. The bridge was closed to vehicles for many
years and finally dismantled in 1979. Discussion of what to do about the bridge
had gone on and on for years. Many articles on the matter can be found in the
Now and Then - The Hope Street Bridge
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The bridge during the 1955 flood.