CRAIGHEAD COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - The new Bono Bridge is now open to traffic.
The old bridge was wooden and dilapidated when it was demolished in 2011, after nearly a year of being closed.
In 2014, an agreement was reached to build a new bridge and in 2016, the project was finally bid out for construction.
After seven years without the most direct route to Highway 63 and the middle of town, Bono residents and Craighead County Judge Ed Hill are happy to see the project completed.
Hill said the project took long because there had to be agreements between the county, state, and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, which owned the original bridge and right of way.
Several residents have expressed how happy they are about the new bridge, according to the judge.
"We kind of tout it as a convenience plus a safety issue because now the 911 or the fire or whatever or the ambulance, anything, when they get a call in this part of the area they know for sure that they can cross there whether there is a train around or not," Hill said. "So it's a safety issue. It's a great project and we're really proud of it."
Hill also appreciates the citizens' patience while they worked to make the project a reality.