14th Street pedestrian bridge nears completion - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

14th Street pedestrian bridge nears completion

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

We are just weeks away from the completion of the 14th Street pedestrian bridge in Columbus after more than a year of construction.

"When you enhance your area then that brings business in and that's a great thing as far as we are concerned," said Scott Ressmeyer with Country's Barbecue.

Ressmeyer says he has been watching the construction of the 14th Street pedestrian bridge from Country's Barbecue just up the road and says he cannot wait to see the project complete.

Work on the bridge is set to be finished by the end of October or beginning of November, but Columbus Planning Director Rick Jones says there is still a lot to be done.

"We won't be able to have access to the bridge until spring of next year. The reason being the access to the bridge, that isn't really the bridge property, has to be reconstructed. That construction will start in November," said Jones.

Jones say there are three phases to the more than $5 million project: reconstruction of the bridge, work on the access to it and the Riverwalk, and building a plaza near the bridge.

"We are going to maintain that element of community. That bridge has been there for the last hundred years maybe not in the same style or format that it is today, but there has always been a 14th street bridge for the most part," said Jones.

The Planning Director says the bridge will be a great spot to watch whitewater rafting. Richard Bishop with Uptown Columbus agrees.

 "All the new visitors that will be coming to community and those within the community that are looking for a place to watch all the activity that's going on in the river, you won't find a best place that the 14th street bridge or the island at the Riverwalk at the end of 12th street," said Bishop.

Ressemeyer says once everything is complete, it could also help all the surrounding businesses.

"I think it is going to be a beautiful vantage point to see the river and hopefully the rest of Columbus and the people that come and visit our city will take advantage of that and watch the rafters come by and come have BBQ with us," said Ressmeyer.

Jones says there will be space for events on the bridge, and there may be spots for vendors. He says everything is set to be complete by spring of next year.

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