Niagara Gazette

Columns

October 12, 2013

LETTERS FROM THE ISLAND: 'Miss September' rises to the south

Niagara Gazette — Dear Mainland Bridge Buffs — Pardon us while our girders burst with pride. Our much-maligned South Bridge, site of perpetual repaving and scorn, has been selected as Miss September in the American Society of Civil Engineers’ 2014 calendar and its image won second prize in their first-ever bridge photography contest.

It’s in mighty elite company. First prize went to a crossing in Pamban, India. The Pamban span (sorry, couldn’t resist that) seems suspended above a clear sea in the middle of nowhere. Miss December is photographed from one of those maddeningly reliable Swiss trains as it penetrates a 4,200-foot-high tunnel across the Landwasser arch of concrete stilts to Schmitten, population 264. Bridge to nowhere, anybody?

An august panel with more degrees than a thermometer store studied some 6,000 entries, “striking photos that highlight the design and engineering achievement,” according to the contest rules as provided by ASCE marketer Chi Wang, whose afternoon we disrupted with an avalanche of e-mails and phone calls.

“No failures of engineering,” the rules stressed (translation: no collapses), and honest photography (“no fish-eye lenses”).

And so with these constraints, one Michael B. Stuart of Lewiston, whose wife, Nicole, is the portrait photographer in the family, lined up an evening shot from the southwest side, the bridge (two, of course, as you know) bathed in blue light against a sepia sky. No tolls. No construction barriers. It looks like summer, but on a tight deadline, we were unable to link up with the shooter himself.

How we found out about this speaks to the variety of our friendships without benefit of Facebook. A covered-bridge student in Pennsylvania sent us a link, along with a note, “Have you seen any of these bridges?” Doug opened it and e-mailed back, “Heck, one of ‘em goes right over our house.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • NIA Hamilton, Ken mug HAMILTON: The Bills stadium and the proverbs We are what we are because of the way that we think, and we got the nothingness that have as a result of it.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA DeLuca, Michele mug DELUCA: Say it ain't so, Joe I had just parked my car in front of the Gazette offices on Niagara Street last week Thursday when a man approached me and stood by my door.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Tom T mug TOM'S CORNER: Bringing your own parts to repair shop is a bad idea The Gazette has partnered with local automotive expert Tom Torbjornsen to publish his weekly national column. Tom's Corner will appear in Thursday's editions.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Glynn, Don mug GLYNN: Tourism operators ready for new season Niagara area hospitality industry people will mark National Tourism Week, May 3 to May 11, with special events focusing on the assets that shape the Cataract City as a major destination.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Bradberry, Bill mug BRADBERRY: Neither long ago, nor far away ... If you did not catch documentary filmmaker Ken Burns' latest masterpiece, "The Address" on PBS last night, it will be well worth your time to look for the re-run, or to find it online as soon as possible.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Confer, Bob Mug CONFER: Don't go soft on teenage criminals New York is one of two states â€" North Carolina being the other â€" that automatically prosecute 16- and 17-year-olds as adults in misdemeanor and felony cases. Other states do so only on a conditional basis at the whim of the presiding judge.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Higgs, Norma mug HIGGS: Gothic architecture -- a fitting structure for church services Before we get involved in the new church building, we need to know what happened to the former structure on First Street which was utilized for St. Peter's Church services for 30 years until 1880 when the present stone church was ready for use.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • GLYNN: Local interest mounts in India's big election A number of people whose families have emigrated from India to the U.S. -- a solid sector of the hotel and restaurant business in the Niagara area -- are expected to hear a message today directly from the homeland.

    April 13, 2014

  • SINGER: Locating the next Shaq or Bird? With hallowed college hoops programs thriving around here, plus March NCAA games held in Buffalo (featuring champ-to-be UConn, upstart Dayton and a winnowed 'Cuse), will some new Shaq or Bird be located?

    April 13, 2014

  • Rick Pfeiffer COPS NOTEBOOK: Road rage and turkey shooting

    It would be fair to say Ryan Jackson, of Youngstown, has had a difficult couple of weeks.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page