Dedication for New SeMo Bridge over Mississippi Set for Mid-December

November 18, 2003 - Posted at 5:48 p.m. CDT

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO - A dedication ceremony for Cape Girardeau's new Mississippi River bridge is scheduled for December 13, but project officials aren't guaranteeing the bridge will be open by then.

One factor is wind.  The large power cranes that must be dismantled from the towers before the bridge opens can't be removed safely in high winds.

Project engineer Stan Johnson says the dedication ceremony will go on, even if the bridge isn't quite ready to open for traffic.

The new Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge is named for southeast Missouri's longtime congressman.  The $100 million four-lane structure replaces a 75-year-old two-lane bridge riddled with rust and potholes.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)