The Tridge is the formal name of a three legged wooden footbridge spanning the confluence of the Tittabawassee and Chippewa Rivers in Chippewassee Park in Midland. The Tridge opened in 1981. It consists of one 31-foot (9.4 m) tall central pillar supporting three spokes. Each spoke is 180 feet long by 8 feet wide.
The Tridge is one of Midland's largest tourist attractions and people often travel from all over the country to visit it! Its three legs span out to Chippewassee Park, St. Charles Park (Old Red Coats) and the Farmer's Market areas. The Chippewa Nature trail also begins at the Tridge. To access the Tridge by vehicle, head to Downtown Midland or plug "111 W. Main Street" (Midland Area Farmers Market) into your GPS. You can't miss it!
The Tridge also marks the starting point of the Pere Marquette Rail Trail, a Michigan Rails to Trails Conservancy Hall of Fame trail. Although being mainly a footbridge, bicycles, skateboards, and in-line skates are also allowed on the bridge. It is the focal point for summer evening concerts. Fishing is generally not permitted from the Tridge, although it does occur frequently.
2017 Tridge Renovation Project
From April through December 2017, the Tridge underwent a major renovation project to make improvements and extend the life of this community landmark. Made possible by the generous support of the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation, the City of Midland made several significant improvements to the Tridge:
- Removing the old stain and re-staining with an oil-based product
- Replacing the original 1981 wood decking
- Replacing railing posts and overhead cross beams
- Replacing the arch lights with a new programmable color-changing LED system
- Re-adding benches to the center of the Tridge
The work required closures to each leg of the Tridge and cost an estimated $2.7 million. (Fun fact: when it was constructed in 1981, the total cost to build it came in at $972,000!)
But what happened to the "original" Tridge materials? Well, you can still find some of them around town. Watch the video below to see how we used pieces of history to build bridges in other areas in the City of Midland!
Renovation Photo Slideshow
View the slideshow below for a series of images taken throughout the Tridge renovation!
Renovation Video Slideshow
How did we get here? Watch the videos via the slideshow below to guide your way through this project from initial concept, to unforeseen challenges, to completion!