Niles' most popular bridge to be re-built with help from the public

One of Niles' most popular bridges will soon be re-built, and the new design will be picked by the public.

Tuesday night, the Michigan Department of Transportation held a meeting to gather feedback about three proposed designs for a new bridge.

It will replace the 93 year-old bridge in Downtown Niles that goes over the St. Joseph River. You can see it along the River Walk connecting Downtown Niles to Lakeland Hospital.

For two weeks, Michigan residents can vote on their favorite design by stopping by Niles City Hall.

“Well the current bridge is over 90 years old it is a concrete arc that is earth filled so it is an out dated design and its useful life is coming to an end,” said Jason Latham of MDOT. “It is perfectly safe but it is time to major rehab or replace it and from our stand point and for safety reasons total replacement is the best option.”

The winning design will be announced in February. Construction could start as early as November, or this spring. The bridge will be paid for with federal and state tax dollars.

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