What is in store for this beautiful footbridge?
What is in store for this beautiful footbridge?

Important meeting set to discuss the future of Lake Park Bridge

A public information meeting on the future of the 1905 Alfred Clas-designed Lake Park Ravine Road footbridge has been set for Tuesday, July 19 at 5 p.m. in the meeting room beneath Lake Park Bistro. Testimony will be heard from the community.

According to a post on the Historic Water Tower Neighborhood association's website, there are new hopes for saving the existing bridge rather than replacing it or doing away with it altogether.

HWTN points first to a report by Minnesota-based historic bridge restoration company Olson & Nesvold Engineers that says a "reasonable rehabilitation option" could extend the life of the bridge by 40 to 50 years.

Last month, Wisconsin's State Historic Preservation Office said that Milwaukee County Parks "must demonstrate that (the) bridge cannot be feasibly repaired" before it can look at other options.

It added that because the Frederick Law Olmsted-designed park is on the National Register of Historic Places, "A new construction design is not appropriate and will result in an adverse effect to the historic parkway property."

Finally, HWTN notes that "supporters have identified federal grants available to pay for most of the cost of repairs, greatly reducing cost to county property taxpayers. In contrast, the cost of replacing the bridge would need to be fully borne by county property taxpayers – the grants cannot be used for replacement or demolition."

Go to the meeting for further updates and to make your voice heard.

In the meantime, Ravine Road – the curving, wooded byway spanned by the bridge – remains closed until the bridge is repaired, replaced or removed.


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