Tag: Big Bear Dam Bridge

1884 – Big Bear Gets a Dam and a Lake

    Big Bear Lake, CA, February 15, 2014 – Frank Brown and Hiram Barton rode into Big Bear Valley on horseback in May of 1883. They quickly concluded that if they built a dam at the narrow west end of the valley, they would create a lake five and a half miles long that could supply much needed water to thirsty communities down the hill. For economic reasons, they decided on a stone arch dam 52 feet high, built of hand cut granite blocks weighing as much as 5 tons each. The dam was finished in 1884 at a cost of $75,000., creating the largest man made lake in the world at the time. In 1910, due to the growing citrus industry in the valleys below, it was decided a new, larger dam was needed to increase the capacity of the lake. An unusual, multiple-arch design was built by John Eastwood about 300 feet further downstream. Cement and supplies were hauled up the mountain from Victorville by teams of horses. It was finished in 1912, costing $138,000. The new design did not inspire public confidence. However, it proved it’s strength when it withstood a large earthquake in 1921 without a crack. The new dam, which was 20 feet higher than the old 1884 dam, increased the the size of the lake from 1800 acres to 2500 acres and...

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Big Bear Bridge Opening Celebration

Big Bear Lake, CA, June 11, 2011, 1pm – Caltrans and Flatiron will be celebrating the opening of the new $39 million bridge over the Big Bear dam on the new bridge deck, June 24th from 11:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m. Construction began in early 2009 and has survived two harsh winters. The new structure is located on the south side of the dam. The project realigned the roadway, constructed three 12-foot travel lanes, 10-foot shoulders, and an American Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant sidewalk on one side of the bridge. The intersection of SR-18 and SR-38 will be signalized upon final completion. At the celebration, guests will include Caltrans District Director Dr. Ray Wolfe, Senator Bob Dutton, Assemblyman Paul Cook, San Bernardino County Supervisor Neil Derry, and the City of Big Bear Lake Mayor Bill Jahn. “After many, many years in development, the much anticipated new bridge is finally a reality, eliminating a choke point leading into the Big Bear Valley.” said Caltrans District Director Dr. Ray Wolfe. “The people of the Big Bear Valley and all those who visit this community are happy to see this bridge open after two years of construction,” Senate Republican Leader Bob Dutton (R-Rancho Cucamonga), said. “The opening of the Big Bear Dam bridge road, along with the repairs made to SR-330, will have a lasting and real impact on the San Bernardino Mountain communities...

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The Local Buzz

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