George Voinovich Bridge: opening ceremony celebrates near-end of construction

CLEVELAND – The new eastbound lanes of George V. Voinovich “Innerbelt” Bridge are scheduled to partially open this Sunday. It’s a major milestone in the six-year, $566 million dollar construction project. Saturday morning ODOT held a ribbon cutting and opening ceremony and the public was invited to witness the big event.

“Hard to imagine when you just see papers you sit in an office,” said Victorya Garber who helped design the bridge. “When you see an actual structure you get excited and very proud.”

No one was more excited than Mrs. Janet Voinovich, who says the bridge serves as a lasting legacy to her husband former Cleveland Mayor, Ohio Governor and U.S. Senator.

“I think he would be very proud,” she said.

The wait is just about over for drivers. ODOT says in late October all east-bound lanes are scheduled to open. People who attended the ceremony say they’re looking forward to shorter drive times so they can get back home to the people who matter most.

“Weekdays it's about a 40-45 minute drive so with more lanes hopefully it will be a lot less time on the roads and I can see her [wife] more,” Scott Bible.

Others in attendance say it gives then another reason to be proud of Cleveland.

“It's like the back end of just a phenomenal summer in Cleveland from the Cavs to the convention to the Indians making their charge,” said Gary Szelagowski. “It's a great time to be here and a great time to be from here.”