DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – A ribbon cutting was held for a $17 million bridge project in Dayton Wednesday.
According to a release, community members joined state and local officials to celebrate the completion of the Third Street Bridge, the largest bridge project ever in Montgomery County.
The county said the bridge is also known as Dayton’s Peace Bridge due to it symbolizing unification.
“We had a series of discussions with artists, historians, journalists and citizens from Wright Dunbar Neighborhood,” said Montgomery County Engineer Paul Gruner. “There was agreement that our Peace Bridge should speak to African American struggles, our city’s rich history, and the legacy of this important structure. I think everyone involved is very proud of the results.”
The bridge’s art features include bas-relief images cast into the concrete of the original 1963 Peace March, the Wright brothers, Paul Lawrence Dunbar, and a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King. The county said it also has ornate observation platforms, and a wide pedestrian walkway, adorned with African Adinkra symbols that each represent a different healthy, peaceful human behavior.
“The old Third Street Bridge was 114 years old, and in desperate need of replacement,” said Montgomery County Commission President Judy Dodge. “This new structure is beautiful – both from the bridge deck and the bike path below – and it will be illuminated at night to feature all this lovely art. It’s really an attraction for Dayton and Montgomery County.”
The Peace Bridge will be open to traffic later in the fall.