RAINBOW BRIDGE. The bridge over the Neches River connecting Port Arthur and Orange County was dedicated on September 8, 1938, as the Port Arthur-Orange Bridge and replaced the Dryden Ferry as a part of the "Hug-the-Coast Highway" on State Highway 87. As a result of a contest in 1957 it became known as the "Rainbow Bridge."Beaumont representatives offered to end the controversy if the Port Arthur faction would approve a vertical clearance of 185 feet for the bridge. The matter ended with a compromise of 176 feet. The bridge was built with a vertical clearance of 176+ feet, a main span of 680 feet between main piers, and 600 feet between fenders. The cantilever bridge was designed to withstand the force of a 130-mile hurricane wind and a wind pressure of seventy-five pounds per square foot. A special driving rig was designed. The eight pairs of reinforced concrete piers were to extend from ninety-five feet to 102 feet below the surface of the water and rise eleven feet to twenty feet above. The sixty-eight smaller piers were to be supported to an average depth of seventy-five feet. The total length of the bridge and approaches would be 7,752 feet. The roadway was to be 252 feet wide between railings and 222 feet wide between curbs, providing an eighteen-inch walkway. The incline of the bridge was to be 5 percent, a rise vertically five feet for each 100 feet of climb. The project plans revealed there are 1,428 feet of cantilever spans, 1,200 feet of continuous truss spans, 2,560 feet of deck truss spans, 1,802 feet of deck girder spans, and 762 feet of concrete girder spans.