Historic Lafayette Bridge Nears Completion

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FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) -- After months of construction the historic Lafayette Bridge near the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville will reopen.

The Lafayette Bridge, which was originally built in the 1930s, is expected to open to traffic on Friday (July 29).

The city received federal funding to restore both the Maple Overpass and Lafayette Bridge. The two bridges cost about $1.7 million to be restored.

Both bridges will have an anti-graffiti coating that will make it easier to remove future graffiti.  New lights will also be added, and the sidewalks will also be replaced and widened.

Sidewalks on the Maple Overpass will be widened further because it has a higher pedestrian traffic flow.

Paula Marinoni, who's family has lived near the bridges since 1905, said she's happy the bridge is being restored, especially with all the new buildings that have been built in the area.

"There are a lot of big buildings going up around here and a lot of change," said Marinoni. "What I have seen consistently for 21 years is that you don't have to save everything, but you need to save important things."

Maple Overpass is expected to reopen by the time students return for the U of A's fall semester.