Fun Facts About the Mystic River Bascule Bridge

What’s one destination in town that visitors and locals of Mystic just can’t get enough of? The Mystic River Bascule Bridge.

Known to most as the Mystic Drawbridge, it connects the two sides of downtown Mystic that are divided by the Mystic River. Here are some of our favorite facts about the Mystic Drawbridge!

  • Construction began on the bridge in 1919 and opened to the public on July 19th, 1922. It replaced a swing bridge that stood there previously. Until 1928 the bridge carried street cars.
  • The bridge is very unique because all of the mechanical parts are exposed
  • “Bascule” is the French word for seesaw and refers to a drawbridge with counterweights.
  • Each counterweight on the Mystic drawbridge is a staggering 230 tons of concrete!
  • The bridge opens once an hour and on demand during daylight in the summer months. Off season it opens on demand. It stays open for approximately 5 minutes at a time.
  • The bridge opens on average 2,200 times per year.
  • The bridge is inspected every 100 openings.
  • In 2012, the bridge underwent an extensive rehabilitation.

SInce this year is the 100 year anniversary of the Mystic River Bascule Bridge, there are several events planned to commemorate the occasion, the culmination of which will be a ceremony, dedication and fireworks over the Mystic River on October 15th, 2022!

We hope you enjoyed these fun facts about the Mystic Drawbridge! Share any photos you have of this historic landmark and be sure to tag @think_mystic in your post!