ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Elmira’s Lake Street pedestrian bridge is nearing completion after years of planning and construction.

Workers removed barriers on Friday afternoon to the new bridge that connects two city parks across the Chemung River. Pedestrians were able to walk onto the first section of the bridge but work continues to finish the project towards the middle of the bridge.

18 News has reached out to the city manager and Department of Public Works for comment on the project’s status.

Scheduled work for the 2021 construction season included installing a new deck surface, updating the railing system, and installing a landscape/planter the full length of the bridge. Upgraded lighting was installed and the north and south approaches were also reconstructed.

City officials have told 18 News that the bridge could eventually be used for events such as farmer’s markets or craft fairs.

Pedestrians illegally using Clemens Center Parkway Bridge to cross the Chemung River

In June 2018 the city released plans to turn the bridge into a pedestrian walkway with the following goals:

  • Structural rehabilitation
  • Ped & Bike connection on the bridge
  • Connect two City parks
  • Connection from Pennsylvania Ave to NYS Bike Route 17 at E. Water St
  • Create a focal point/gateway as part of Elmira’s Downtown Revitalization

The original plan from 2018 projected construction to start in 2020.