Pedestrian bridge to lakefront will take more time

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CLEVELAND - The pedestrian bridge that will eventually connect downtown and the lakefront will not be ready in June of 2016. Planners are now looking at a completion date in 2017, after deciding to ask the general contractor for the project for a brand new proposal.

The bridge is being funded by Cuyahoga County, the City of Cleveland and the State of Ohio. Project partners said today that they will try to stick with the original budget of $25 million. If the total does exceed the budget, no additional local public money is expected to be needed.

The expected delay and new completion date means that the bridge will not be ready for the Republican National Convention in  2016,  but city and county leaders stress that they want the best bridge possible, and don't want to rush the construction.

"We have one opportunity to build an iconic structure to connect pedestrians and cyclists to the lake, and we are going to make sure that we get it absolutely right, both in how it looks and in how it is built, and without additional local public funds,” said Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish.

“The Pedestrian Bridge is an important feature that, when completed, will provide pedestrians and cyclists another friendly link between downtown and the lake front and is a key component of my vision for Cleveland,” said Mayor Frank G. Jackson.