Building a BIG bridge

Construction of a giant pedestrian bridge over three train tracks and five lanes of traffic is underway.

This is almost certain to be the largest pedestrian bridge in Elkhart County. It will cost roughly $6 million and take a year to build. But by next fall, you’ll be able to walk from the MapleHeart Trail along Wilden Avenue, up Missouri Avenue, alongside C.R. 17 for roughly 200 feet, and then down to Rieth Boulevard. (And vice versa.)

“It’s such a critical location, especially with the new courthouse being built right there,” said Charlie McKenzie, Elkhart County engineer.

This is a separate structure from the C.R. 17 overpass, which extends over the tracks and U.S. 33. The bridge will connect the MapleHeart and Northwest Trails in what is technically Goshen, but also known as Dunlap. McKenzie and others are thrilled about the new trail and cite how much it’s needed.

“We’re finally connecting the county’s trail network to the shopping and other services located on the south side of U.S. 33. And residents on the southside will be connected to an additional 25 miles of trails. This is a pivotal project for Elkhart County in terms of safety and transportation equity,” said Brittany Short, director of Connect in Elkhart County.

The bridge will be the only grade-separated crossing, either over or under tracks, between Hively Avenue in Elkhart and Lincoln Avenue in Goshen, McKenzie said.

Construction started this fall and will continue as much as possible over the winter. It is expected to open in fall of this year.

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