BEAVERCREEK — A $3.3 million pedestrian/cycling bridge connecting Beavercreek and Fairborn opened Friday afternoon. The Wright State Way pedestrian bridge, which spans Interstate 675 in between the two cities, connects near the west side of the Beavercreek Sam’s Club and the Fairborn Holiday Inn on the opposite side, will provide pedestrians with a safer alternative route back and forth to nearby restaurants and shops.
Prior to the construction of the 467-feet-long, 12-feet-wide steel-beamed bridge, no sidewalk or bike lane existed connecting Fairborn and Beavercreek in the area of Wright State University.
“This bridge is a great link from Beavercreek to Wright State University,” Beavercreek Mayor Brian Jarvis said at an opening ceremony for the bridge on Friday. “It allows students, faculty and staff easier and safer passage to and from Beavercreek.”
Construction on the bridge began in August of 2014, but the process of bringing the structure about stretched back to 2005, according to former Beavercreek Bikeway Adivsory Committee chair Roger Brislawn.
“In 2005, the … committee saw the need for safe crossing … over I-675,” he said. “It has been ten years from conception to reality, for the completion of this beautiful bridge.”
Two thirds of the project’s funding came by way of federal dollars (about $2.2 million), and the remaining third came via local contributions (about $1.1 million). Other parties contributing to the project included Wright State University and Clark State Community College, to the tunes of $70,000 and $20,000, respectively.
“This is only the beginning of many more such projects throughout the state and throughout the country,” said Chris Widener, R-Springfield. “No single entity can do these sorts of things by themselves anymore. In order for us to improve our communities in this way … there’s going to have to be collaboration.”
Wright State Way, a pedestrian/cycling bridge connecting Beavercreek and Fairborn, opened Friday afternoon.