BETHEL PARK (KDKA) — A major bridge construction project is one step closer to being open to the public.
The J.R. Taylor Memorial Bridge in Bethel Park should be ready for use in September. It will allow the Montour Trail to cross Clifton Road, and that is making some residents very happy.
For years, Montour Trail riders in Bethel Park rode until they got to the big orange closed sign posted on the road.
“There was about two miles of the Montour Trail in Bethel Park, and the middle of it is cut by Clifton Road. It’s been a barrier to trail users for a decade,” said Ned Williams, of the Montour Trail Council.
That is, until this week when the gap would be no longer a bridge too far.
“It was assembled in two days, a 200-foot span,” said Williams of the new structure.
The J.R. Taylor Memorial Bridge was built but not in place, but slowly the American Bridge Company creation was maneuvered through a web of high-powered lines today. Century Steel Erectors piloted the cranes in the process, and Mingo Creek contracting guided the steel behemoth onto the abutments that they made.
“We’ve been working on this for seven years and we finally got this together,” said Donn Taylor, of Century Steel Erectors.
Taylor is the president of Century Steel Erectors, and J.R. Taylor was his son.
“My kids got me involved after my son got killed in 2004,” he said. “They wanted to do something, and I guess the Montour Trail came to them or they went to the Montour Trail, and said could we build this bridge for them over this road. My son lived on this road about a mile down.”
Some final touches have to be completed, but the grand opening of the bridge is scheduled for September.