Cedar View Trail
A Walk Down the Cedar View Trail
The East Entrance to the Cedar View Trail. This was the Rock Island Railroad roadbed from 1945 to 1980.
Tall Grass Prairie on the left, dominated by Big Bluestem, Indian Grass & Switch Grass, and lots of flowers in the summer.
This used to be a junk yard.
Turn left here for the connection to the IA DOT Trail, which parallels the new Hwy 34 By-Pass.
The new trail bridge ahead (Cedar View Bridge #2) crosses over the new highway.
Volunteers installed the brick plazas at the ends of the bridge. The bridge is 256 feet long.
A grant from the National Endowment of the Arts assisted us in enhancing the bridge.
Volunteers installed the brick plazas at the ends of the bridge. The pattern in the brick represents railroad tracks and ties.
The Art Deco decorative posts soften the chain link fence, courtesy of the Iowa DOT.
Looking North at the IA DOT Trail along the new Hwy 34 bypass.
Proceeding westward. The tree canopy provides great shade in the summer.
Colors are not great this year. These trees grew after the Rock Island abandoned the roadbed in 1980.
The railroad built their roadbed on fill through the wetlands in the 1940's. Luckily for us, they did a good job.
During highway construction a wetland pool was created using dikes, and the floodplain wetland was reconstructed.
The wetlands attract all types of waterfowl during migration.
Approaching the look-out shelter.
Volunteers built this. What is there to see?
A good place to view the wetlands.
The JCCB is finishing up flagstone bridge approach enhancements to the Cedar View Bridge.
This plaque was recently installed by the Jefferson County Conservation Board.
Judy Bales designed decorative stylized "tree-forms" to retrofit onto the Cedar View Bridge,
helping to soften the very industrial appearance of the bridge.
Cedar Creek is 60 feet below. Cor-Ten steel self-oxidizes, forming a protective coat of rust over time.
See the page Cedar View Bridge #1 for more details.
Looking South at the creek 60 feet below.
Approaching the west end of the bridge. The 376-foot bridge uses the old railroad bridge abutments to support the ends.
The west end of the bridge. Volunteers installed the Cor-Ten steel enhancements.
Looking West. We have come a mile now. The CVT continues onto Libertyville by using shared roadways.
Photos by Jeff Fitz-Randolph, Oct 2007 & Sept 2011
Cedar View Trail, Bridge #2 - over Hwy 34 (2007)
The East Entrance to the Cedar View Trail. Let's go see the new bridge over the new highway
Heading west toward the new trail bridge.
The bridge approach simulates railroad tracks
Preparing the approach for the brick paving
Smoothing out the sand
Compacting the sand for a good base for the bricks
Placing the bricks with a supervisor watching.
Cutting the final bricks to shape.
Spreading sand on the bricks to lock them together.
The Art Deco decorative posts soften the chain link fence.
A side view of the new bridge.
Looking north. Note the trail on the right side of the photo - it is not complete.
Looking south from the trail bridge. This new freeway will be finished in 2008, and will have a trail beside it.
Let's head back. Another day we can continue westbound to the bridge over Cedar creek (Details here).
Heading back to the parking lot (eastbound)
Across the street from the CVT parking lot is the Northeast Entrance to Jefferson County Park
Photos by Chris Hallenger (CH) and Jeff Fitz-Randolph, July 2007
Cedar View Bridge #1 - Enhancements in 2006
Cedar View Bridge #1 on the Cedar View Trail updated
Enhancements for the existing Cedar View Bridge over Crow Creek were installed in September, 2006, commissioned by the Jefferson County Trails Council and Jefferson County Conservation Board.
Judy Bales designed decorative elements to retrofit onto the Cedar View Bridge, helping to soften the very industrial appearance of the bridge. The art elements are fabricated from Cor-Ten steel, a metal that self-oxidizes, forming a protective coat of rust over time. The patina of rust will help visually integrate the bridge into the beautiful wooded environment.
The steel elements are stylized "tree-forms." Four tree-form designs repeat throughout the length of the bridge, with more elaborate shapes at the wings approaching the bridge. Bales designed the art elements to be firmly attached to the structure yet not obstruct the view of the creek.
Additional plans to enhance this bridge include openings in the chain link for easier viewing of the creek as well as prairie grasses and flagstone pavers at the approaches.
The project was made possible by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as financial support from the Fairfield Art Association and The Dexter Company. Steffansmeir Manufacturing (in Pilot Grove, IA) cut and welded the steel, and Greg Vorhies of Schaus Vorhies Contracting supplied technical consultation and practical advice. Photos by Judy Bales.
To view Judy Bales' portfolio, please visit her website at www.judybales.com
The bridge with the Cor-ten elements installed
The Cor-Ten steel is already beginning to rust (Oct 13, 2006)
The rusting process continues (Nov 8, 2006)
Construction Photos - Cedar View Trail Bridge #1, 2002
Following are photos of the Cedar View Bridge #1 under construction in 2002. Here is the completed bridge.
Dedicated August 3, 2002, the 376' bridge over Cedar Creek is about 1 mile west of Jefferson County Park.
Contractor: Godbersen-Smith from Ida Grove, IA
Construction began on the Cedar View Bridge in 2002.
Members and employees of the Jefferson County Conservation Board are standing on one of
the original Rock Island Railroad bridge abutments, which will be used for the new trail bridge.
The Cedar View Bridge under construction in 2002.
The original pier-bases, seen here, were not in the correct location for the new bridge, so new piers had to be built.
One of the new piers is starting to rise.
Preparing the concrete form for a pier.
Pouring cement for a pier.
Pouring cement into the pier form.
Bringing in one of the pre-cast concrete beams for the Cedar View Bridge.
Placing a beam on the pier. Somebody has to do it.
A view from the side.
Four of the six beams are now in place.
The beams are now in place. Forms will be built for a deck pour.
A view from the side.
As seen from the Cedar Creek. The bridge is 60 feet above the creek.
Dedicated August 3, 2002, the 376' bridge over Cedar Creek is just west of Jefferson County Park
Photos by Ron Meyers, 2002