Members of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra serenaded officials and more than 40 onlookers as the ribbon was cut on the refurbished Grand Ave. Bridge.
Dignitaries said the bridge will be a critical link in the heart of the city, connecting cultural institutions at Grand Center with St. Louis University and Harris Stowe State University.
Alderwoman Marlene Davis expects the $22 million bridge project and the adjoining $7 million Metro Scott Ave. Transit Project to yield an economic boost.
“When people are looking to locate a new business, a new retail spot, they look for things like this,” Davis said. “Because they see the opportunity here with the transportation system and the beauty of it.”
Davis expects the new MetroLink station to draw more visitors from the suburbs.
She also said the combination of lighting and strong security presence from local universities and businesses in addition to regular police patrols should quell any safety fears.
“I really do believe that it’s safe,” Davis said. “We have so much security now, we have about nine entities that are checking things out all day and all night, plus cameras.”
Officials said that improvements, including 13-foot wide sidewalks, will ensure pedestrian safety, too.
St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay and other speakers praised the level of cooperation between various entities and stakeholders involved in the construction project.