This majestic span crosses the picturesque Halifax River to connect East Volusia’s mainland with its world famous beaches, replacing the old bascule drawbridge that had been there for more than 60 years.
A $48 million project funded by the federal government, the bridge extends out along East Orange Avenue on the mainland and Silver Beach Avenue on the beachside and is the southernmost of the multiple spans that cross over the Intracoastal Waterway in Daytona Beach as key transportation links to the county’s coastal areas.
For more information about the bridge, call Volusia County Engineering and Construction at 386-736-5967. Ask for Volusia County Engineer Tadd Kasbeer, P.E.
The bridge was named after Tom Staed, a prominent area hotelier and Korean War veteran who passed away in 2013. Staed’s widow, Barbara Staed, accompanied by her daughter and two grandchildren, led the inaugural group of cars over the bridge on the opening day in a vehicle processional that also included Volusia County Council members past and present as well as representatives from the City of Daytona Beach, local veterans groups, the Daytona Regional Chamber and the Daytona Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. Among the dignitaries was former County Council member Josh Wagner, who is credited with helping to get the bridge project started when he served on the council.
Designed to be a commemorative for the country’s military, the bridge features handicap accessibility, 8-foot sidewalks, fishing piers on both sides of the Halifax River, and plaques at 28 scenic overlooks commemorating conflicts in America’s military history. The plaques include descriptions of conflicts and outcomes; the number of killed, wounded and missing in action; a QR code linked to additional data; and a Braille plate with information.
Due to its unique open-spandrel arch approach design, the $38 million dollar Veterans Memorial Bridge was recently recognized as the No. 3 bridge constructed in 2020 by Road & Bridge Magazine.