In a move to improve pedestrian safety in Monona, the city council has approved a foot bridge that will help citizens safely cross Winnequah Rd. The $17.2 million structure will be located between the intersections of Graham and Frost Woods.
“It’s been a long time coming,” said a local resident.
Construction of the bridge will begin this spring, said Mayor Bob Miller. “We hope to have it completed by mid-fall.”
The bridge is the final compromise on pedestrian safety on Winnequah Road, where kids are struck by speeding cars “at an alarming frequency” said Alderman Chad Speight. “We estimate that, without this bridge, Monona’s population will dwindle by about 7% due to deaths on Winnequah Road.”
The new bridge will be state of the art – pleasing to the eye as well as functional.
“On the west side of the bridge there will be a handicap accessible bathroom at the base,” said Alderman Jeff Wiswell. “No longer will fear of bladder issues stop people from walking down Winnequah.”
The lights in the bathroom, as well as those on both sides of the bridge, will be powered by a state-of-the-art solar panel system, which will rest strategically on top of the bathroom roof – thus avoiding any unsightly panels sticking up into the sky.
The bridge will feature a spiral staircase on both sides to the walkway with railings made of Baldacian Spanish Steel to prevent rusting. Gold filigree will be inlaid into the railings.
The walkway across Winnequah will be enclosed by strong wire mesh, to prevent idiots from falling or climbing over. A water fountain will be installed at the halfway point across the bridge.
For bikers or those with issue climbing stairs, each side of the bridge will have a high-speed elevator to take you to the top. The glass enclosed elevator will offer a beautiful view of the road as you are whisked to the top.
As a final touch, the bridge is a drawbridge, allowing it to be raised in case anyone driving down Winnequah has their yacht in tow.
“Forcing boat owners to drive around the bridge the extra block isn’t environmentally friendly,” explained alderman Doug Wood.
With regard to financing, Mayor Miller says it will take “No tax increase.” Instead, the city will borrow necessary funds.
The city said that similar footbridges are being considered for Broadway (near Ahuska Park), several locations on Monona Drive, and on Nichols Drive.