Lowry Avenue Bridge Lighting and Electrical System

Minneapolis, Minnesota

The Hennepin County Lowry Avenue Bridge is an important transportation corridor and neighborhood connection across the Mississippi River in north Minneapolis. Lowry Avenue is also designated as an NHS Connector Route, providing critical transportation access from rail yards east of the river to I-94 on the west.

The existing 830-foot steel through truss bridge was constructed in 1958, incorporating foundation elements from the original 1904 crossing. Instability of the river piers led Hennepin County to permanently close the bridge in 2008.  SRF was retained to develop designs for a replacement structure. The SRF Team is providing complete, design-through-construction services for this important river crossing replacement.

A key electrical aspect of this bridge project includes LED roadway and accent lighting.  SRF worked with the County to evaluate new lighting technologies and provide cost/benefit matrix to aid in equipment selection.  Aesthetics, energy efficiency, photometric performance, capital cost, and durability were all important considerations.  The result is a roadway design that utilizes long life LED sources that is cost competitive with HPS lighting.  The main arches will be lit with a computer controlled color changing LED system that gives the county the opportunity to adjust the arches night time appearance as desired.  The bridge piers will be highlighted with low maintenance LED down lights.  To maintain a minimalist clean lined approach, SRF integrated the sidewalk lighting into the bridge railings utilizing custom LED fixtures.

Other electrical features include LED Coast Guard navigation lighting, a bridge inspection system that includes a ventilation system, induction service lighting, and service outlets.  Design for a security camera system was also included.

SRF worked closely with Hennepin County to tailor a phased approach that will reopen the river crossing in 2011 while respecting funding constraints.



  • Roads & Bridges Top 10 Bridges List at #5, 2013
  • Federal Highway Administration Environmental Excellence Award: Wetlands, Watersheds and Water Quality Category, 2013
  • Minnesota Society of Professional Engineers Seven Wonders of Engineering Award, 2013
  • American Council of Engineering Companies Engineering Excellence Honor Award (National Award), 2013
  • American Council of Engineering Companies – Minnesota Engineering Excellence People’s Choice Award, 2013
  • American Council of Engineering Companies – Minnesota Engineering Excellence Grand Award, 2013
  • American Public Works Association – Minnesota – 2013 Project of the Year
  • Finance & Commerce Top Projects of 2012
  • Minnesota Concrete Council Awards Program (Transportation) First Place, 2012

CLIENT: Hennepin County