There’s a Reason For This Square Shape

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If this utility line structure looks a little odd, there is a reason for that.

It was designed to straddle a railroad track holding hopper cars of coal that had been delivered to a nearby power plant. The spur came off the Pennsylvania Railroad, crossed Front Street in Akron and then went for a short distance along the Cuyahoga River.

Today that railroad spur and the power plant are gone, but the utility line still stands in the Gorge Metropark straddling the border of Akron and Cuyahoga Falls. The former railroad right of way is a trail in the park.

Many, if not most, people who walk this trail probably don’t know why this support structure is shaped as it is. I might not have known either if Roger Durfee had not explained it to me.

Article and Photograph by Craig Sanders

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