ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Traffic is flowing on the Morgan Street Bridge for the first time in nearly 2 years. A project more than a decade in the making.
Neighbors near the bridge see it as a vital connection for the people and businesses around South Rockford.
Eager drivers couldn’t wait to make their way across the brand new Morgan Street Bridge for the first time in nearly 2 years. Despite the cold, dozens of neighbors showed up for the structure’s official grand opening. It’s a dramatic change from more than a year ago, a transformation that 5th ward neighbors say they’re proud to have in their back yard.
Governor Pat Quinn helped debut the new bridge, more than $5 million in state funding went into the $40 million project as well as federal and city dollars. It’s an investment business owners in the area hope will pay off soon.
The city expects 16,000 people a day to cross the bridge now that it’s open. People can cross in their cars or on foot. There are sidewalks on both sides of the bridge.
The Morgan Street Bridge was first built in 1916. There are 4.5 million pounds of structural steel in the new bridge, all being held together by 65,000 bolts.