How Many Bridges Are In Jacksonville, Florida?

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Jacksonville, aptly nicknamed the “River City,” is home to seven major bridges. These bridges, in all their grandeur, connect the city’s downtown with the south, north, and beaches. But there are actually few more than that – less iconic bridges but still playing an important role in the city.

Jacksonville’s unique geography, with the St. Johns River cutting through its heart and the Atlantic Ocean at its doorstep, makes bridges an essential component of its transportation network. Along the way, they offer scenic views of the city’s skyline, the river, the ocean, and the natural beauty of Northeast Florida.

Map created with Wanderlog, a road trip planner app on iOS and Android

Acosta Bridge

I, Jonathan Zander, CC BY-SA 3.0 <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

One of the first bridges you’d likely encounter is the Acosta Bridge. Named after St. Elmo W. Acosta, a city councilman who advocated for its construction, the Acosta Bridge was initially built in 1921 as a lift bridge but was later replaced in 1991 with the current six-lane structure.

The Acosta Bridge is a vital transportation link, connecting downtown Jacksonville with the Southbank, and also a popular running and cycling route, thanks to the pedestrian-friendly walkways on either side. At night, the bridge’s neon lights illuminate the cityscape.

Fuller Warren Bridge

I, Jonathan Zander, CC BY-SA 3.0 <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

Named after Fuller Warren, a former Florida governor, this bridge is a marvel of modern engineering. As part of I-95, it carries thousands of vehicles daily across the St. Johns River, connecting downtown Jacksonville with the city’s western suburbs.

Like the Acosta Bridge, Fuller Warren has a shared-use path – the Jacksonville Riverwalk – just for pedestrians and cyclists. I’ve biked over this bridge quite a few times when I was living in Jacksonville and the views are beautiful from the top! I highly recommend walking or biking here at least once so you can see it.

Dames Point Bridge

I, Jonathan Zander, CC BY-SA 3.0 <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

Officially known as the Napoleon Bonaparte Broward Bridge, the Dames Point Bridge carries I-295 over the St. Johns River. It’s one of the longest cable-stayed bridges in the United States and also an iconic part of Jacksonville’s skyline.

Connecting the San Marco and South Jacksonville areas with downtown, this bridge also offers beautiful scenery as it crosses over the St. Johns River.

FEC Strauss Trunnion Bascule Bridge

FEC Drawbridge. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEC_Drawbridge.jpg. Wikimedia Commons.

The FEC Strauss Trunnion Bascule Bridge is a railroad bridge, operated by the Florida East Coast Railway. It’s unique in that it’s a bascule bridge, meaning it can lift to allow ships to pass underneath. It stands as a symbol of Jacksonville’s rich railway history and showcases the city’s strategic importance as a transportation hub in Florida. Even today, it plays a crucial role in freight movement.

One of the best parts of this bridge is that you can see it from Riverwalk. My son loved trained when he was a toddler, so we often came here to let him watch the trains go by. Riverwalk goes over the bridge, so it’s got a great viewpoint!

Hart Bridge

Excel23, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Named after Isaiah D. Hart, the founder of Jacksonville, the Hart Bridge links the city’s downtown and the sports complex area. With its distinct green color, it’s a familiar sight for sports fans.

Beyond sports, the Hart Bridge is a major route for trucks from the port and serves as an evacuation route during emergencies (as is often the case in Florida – especially running from hurricanes).

Henry H Buckman Bridge

I, Jonathan Zander, CC BY-SA 3.0 <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

The Henry H Buckman Bridge, or “the Buckman” as locals call it, is one of the busiest bridges in Jacksonville. Named after a prominent Jacksonville legislator, the Buckman Bridge is quite long and connects Mandarin with Orange Park.

Most people drive right over this bridge in a hurry, but if you’ve got someone else driving it actually has some beautiful views. It’s a pretty low bridge much of the way, so you can really get good views of the boats out on the water.

John T. Alsop Jr. Bridge

DXR, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

More commonly known as the Main Street Bridge, the John t. Alsop Bridge is an iconic structure and undoubtedly one of the most recognizable landmarks in Jacksonville. With its distinctive blue hue and unique lift design, it is instantly recognizable in Jacksonville’s skyline, especially at night.

Constructed in 1941 and named after one of Jacksonville’s longest-serving mayors, the Main Street Bridge is a beloved symbol of the city.

John E. Mathews Bridge

Nichos at en.wikipedia, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The Mathews Bridge is a cantilever bridge built in 1953 and stretching over the St. Johns River. It is a significant thoroughfare connecting downtown Jacksonville with the Arlington neighborhood. It is has a distinctive red coloring.

Whether you’re viewing it from afar or driving across it, the bridge’s massive structure and vibrant hue make it stand out. Its cantilever design is braced by a complex network of steel trusses.

Trout River Bridge

Moving away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Jacksonville, we come to the Trout River Bridge. Its unique swing design, which allows it to rotate to let large vessels pass, is a fascinating feature that sets it apart from some of the other bridges in town. It was built in 1941 and is still going strong today.

Shands Bridge

Palmount45, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

Next up we come to the Shands Bridge. Spanning the St. Johns River, this two-lane bridge serves as a critical link between Green Cove Springs and St. Johns County. Constructed in 1963, the Shands Bridge has been a reliable companion to the city’s residents for over five decades. 

The Shands Bridge is a workhorse that facilitates the daily commute for thousands of residents. Its strategic location and robust design make it an essential part of the city’s infrastructure.

Atlantic Boulevard – Twin Bridges

This bridge connects Jacksonville Beach with the rest of Jacksonville. FL-10 crosses over this bridge, and so it is very well-traveled path in town.

Charles E. Bennett Memorial Bridge

Rewind816, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0&gt;, via Wikimedia Commons

We conclude our exploration of the bridges in Jacksonville FL with the Charles E. Bennett Memorial Bridge. This bridge, spanning the Intracoastal Waterway, connects the Jacksonville beaches with the city’s mainland.

Its construction in 1970 marked a significant milestone in the city’s growth, connecting the beach communities with the city’s mainland and facilitating their development

The Bottom Line

Most people think of Jacksonville as having seven “iconic” bridges, but in reality there are more than that. Jacksonville is truly a city connected by, and dependent on, its many bridges.