A pedestrian bridge that currently leads to nowhere will lead somewhere soon.
City officials announced in a Facebook post Friday that the pedestrian bridge over Wilkinson Boulevard will be reconnected soon. The bridge is near River View Park and has an entrance on the sidewalk of the West Connector Bridge across from Mero Street. It previously connected the community of Bellepoint to downtown Frankfort.
Eric Cockley, director of Frankfort's Community Planning and Development Department, said the project was discussed in a meeting between city staff members and the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet. The two groups meet regularly about the state's new office building on Mero Street across from Capital Plaza Hotel. He said the city shared the news about the pedestrian bridge because it has received a few questions and comments about it.
Finance and Administration Cabinet spokeswoman Pamela Trautner said the state office building will be completed in late summer or early fall. The bridge will reopen to traffic once the building site is no longer an active construction site. CRM/DW Wilburn, who is the contractor for the office building, will handle the bridge project. Footings for the elevator and stairs have already been installed, she said.
The city's Facebook post said the bridge project will include an elevator and staircase to the state office building side to connect the pedestrian area at ground level.
"The elevator is important as this ensures that the pedestrian connection is available 24/7 and is an ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliant connection between downtown, the park and Bellepoint," the post said.
In a letter to the editor published in The State Journal on June 15, Brent Sweger, president of WalkBike Frankfort, said the connection of the pedestrian bridge should be an "important" part of the office building project.
"An accessible ramp from the bridge to the street-level sidewalk that can be used by pedestrians, wheelchair users and bicyclists is the most advantageous solution," Sweger wrote.