Puente Guillermo Esteves, Spanning San Antonio Channel at PR-25 (Juan Ponce de Leon Avenue), San Juan, San Juan Municipio, PR
Significance: Puente Guillermo Esteves, a five-span concrete and steel girder bridge, is the fourth structure to occupy this site since c.1521. The first was a stone causeway. It was followed by a stone arch bridge whose northern span ended against the gate of a fort which defended its northern end. Several important battles took place around the first two versions of the bridge and the fort. In 1894, the stone bridge was replaced by a four-span iron girder lattice bridge. The present structure, finished in 1927, carries most of the traffic entering historic San Juan islet. It is the work of Puerto Rican masters: engineers Rafael Nones and Felix Benitez-Rexach and architect Rafael Carmoega. Its northernmost span still rests on the fort's partly visible ruins. The girder structure is concealed by facade plates, together with the decorative cast iron lighting fixtures and the balustrades, convey the monumentality of this very important bridge in terms of historic site associations, access to the historic and waterfront districts, and traffic volume. It is mentioned in Puerto Rico's Historic Bridge Inventory and in the Multiple Property Nomination of Puerto Rico's Bridges and its Associated Historic Context, Land Transportation in Puerto Rico, c.1508-1950.
Survey number: HAER PR-36