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Verbatim: Tecumseh bridge opens to traffic

Rehab work under structure to resume next spring

Statement issued By Allen County on Friday afternoon:

Traffic is moving once again across Fort Wayne's historic Tecumseh Street Bridge.

The bridge over the Maumee River has been closed to through traffic since June as work began to restore the 96-year-old span. At around 1:30 this afternoon, the Allen County Highway Department began removing signs indicating both the road and sidewalks were closed.

"The work includes a new reinforced concrete driving surface, new Indiana limestone handrail balusters, new drainage in the bottom of arch rings and new ornamental lighting," said Allen County Commissioner Linda Bloom. "We're about a week ahead of schedule opening the bridge and it looks fantastic."

The project is already being complimented by residents in the area. "We appreciate that the Commissioners chose to restore the bridge, rather than change its original character," said Judi Wire with the North Side Neighborhood Association.

Pioneer Associates, Inc. will return next spring to finish work under the 310-foot structure. During that time, some lane restrictions on the bridge may be necessary.

The entire project – including relocation of utilities and lowering of the pavement grade under the Norfolk and Southern Railroad overpass on Coombs Street – will cost around $2.8 million.

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