VAN BUREN (KFSM) — Those wanting to view the flooded Arkansas River safely now have a second option available.
Van Buren Police Chief Jamie Hammond said the city was opening the Jefferson Street Bridge off Fourth Street for pedestrians only.
Those wishing to view the river can park on one of the public lots on Fourth Street and walk up the bridge.
Also, the Garrison Avenue Bridge is still open to pedestrians only in downtown Fort Smith. The bridge closed briefly to all foot traffic Thursday (May 30) during a visit from Gov. Asa Hutchinson and several of Arkansas’ state and federal legislators, but it was reopened afterward to pedestrians only.
The bridge has been closed to vehicle traffic all week because of flooded roads on the Oklahoma side.
Tim Allen, president of the Fort Smith Chamber of Commerce, encouraged those coming to the Garrison Avenue Bridge to stick around afterward and shop and dine downtown to help the businesses struggling during the flooding crisis.
“Stay away from the river, but don’t stay away from the businesses,” he said.