Some of the most recognizable bridges throughout the world have served as a photographer's dream -- lighting up the skies during the night-time hours.That dream is about to become reality for the Tri-States.Crews plan to add lighting to the Quincy Bayview Bridge starting next month.KHQA spoke with some local residents for reaction and Quincy's city planner about where the money is coming from.Tthe Quincy Bayview Bridge opened in 1987, and it's about to enter a new era 27 years later.
"I think lights on the bridge will give it a lot of ambiance down here with the park below it," Rebecca McCollum said. "I think it'll be very romantic, a nice place for pictures and a nice place to go for a romantic dinner. In the winter, they do ice skating down here, so it'll be a little different atmosphere and a little more homey."
"I think it'll be nice," Jakin Colvin said. "I think it'll add for more atmosphere down here. A lot of people come down here for prom pictures or to romantic outings and picnics and stuff. I think it would be nice."
The road to making the Bayview Bridge lighting possible has been a rocky one. The plan was first proposed in the mid-1990s. Several area residents objected to the idea due to cost. That's why the city went after outside funding to move forward with the project.
"The city received a $456,000 grant from IDOT for the Bayview Bridge lighting project that did require a match of $125,000," Quincy City Planner Chuck Bevelheimer said. "So the city's previous administration worked hard to raise a local match, and they did. They ended up raising $174,000, which is well above our match requirements."
The latter amount came from private donations. Bevelheimer said the city will use the remaining $40,000 to $50,000 above the match for operating costs."Right now, IDOT has the construction documents signed off by the contractor, which is Brown Electric out of Quincy," Bevelheimer said. "Once those documents get back to Brown, and the parts get ordered, we expect the project to get started."