Parks Bar Bridge is a bridge running north and south over the Yuba River on Highway 20. Parks Bar is on the north side of the river.

Panoramic view of the current Parks Bar Bridge from the shoreline on the Yuba River. Photo by queerbychoice.


The current bridge was built in the early 1990s to replace an older bridge that had been slightly upstream of the current one. A historical marker on the south bank, directly east of the current bridge, commemorates the original bridge as follows:

The Yuba River Bridge at Parks Bar
William N. Thomas of Thomas and Post Consulting Engineers designed the 685-foot-long Parks Bar Bridge in 1912 for Yuba County. The original 16-foot-wide bridge with four 140-foot-long arch spans was constructed by the Portland Concrete Pile Company in 1912-13. The bridge was widened to 22 feet in 1924. It was removed in 1994 after a new bridge was built downstream.
William Thomas established himself as a leader in early reinforced concrete bridge design by developing the "Thomas System." This system consisted of precast construction, three-hinge arches and open spandrels. Each arch had three flexible connections: one on each base and one joining the arch halves in the middle. Open spandrels (triangular spaces between the arches and the deck) added to the beauty of the bridge.
Over time, the riverbed lowered and eroded the bridge's base. Undermining of the footings hastened replacement of this impressive early example of the "Thomas System."

This bridge was determined eligible for the National Register of Historic Places in 1986. Commemorative Plaque was placed by the California Department of Transportation in 1996.

Closeup of the historical marker. Photo taken 19 May 2007 by Lane Parker.



Historical Marker Database. Yuba River Bridge at Parks Bar marker.