Starting this week pedestrians and cyclists will have a safe route between Beavercreek and Fairborn, Ohio, making perilous travel over the North Fairfield Road bridge a thing of the past. On August 28, the City of Beavercreek held a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Wright State Way Bridge, a 467-foot-long pedestrian bridge that crosses over Interstate 675.
LJB provided bridge, wall and bikeway approach design services for the project. Several members of the design team attended the event, along with more than 300 people from the surrounding communities.
“It was so exciting to see the people gathered in anticipation of crossing the bridge,” said LJB bridge engineer Amy Moore. “Seeing that my work is going to make life better for so many students and pedestrians in our community is really rewarding.”
Previously, walking across the North Fairfield Road bridge was the only way to travel from the Wright State University area into Beavercreek. However, the North Fairfield bridge is used by close to 34,000 vehicles a day and has no sidewalks or pedestrian crossing signals. The new Wright State Way Bridge provides better access to Clark State Community College, the Mall at Fairfield Commons, the Soin Medical Center, and surrounding offices, retail outlets and services.
During the ribbon-cutting ceremony, City of Beavercreek Mayor Brian Jarvis spoke about the impact the bridge will have on the community. “Beavercreek is looking to the future with alternative modes of transportation that fits the needs of our community, and this will be a big part of our future development.”
The Wright State Way Bridge is expected to greatly benefit students attending both Wright State University and Clark State Community College. This month the schools launched a gateway program for Clark State students who eventually plan to transfer to Wright State. The students in the program will need a method of safe passage between the two institutions to access facilities like Wright State’s fitness center, library and dining hall. Clark State students may also reside in Wright State housing while in the program.
“Collaboration builds bridges…literally,” said Dr. Jo Alice Blondin, president of Clark State Community College.
In addition to students and other pedestrians, the bridge provides a link to the region’s extensive bike trail network. Cyclists will be able to access the Creekside Trail via the Wright Brothers/Huffman Prairie Trail and the Mad River Trail.