Almost one year to the day construction on the Black Bridge in Bracebridge started, the bridge will reopen.

The bridge is fully open to vehicle and pedestrian traffic with an official ceremony planned for August. “The new structure will permit the passage of all motor vehicles legally permitted on Ontario highways, and features a concrete sidewalk within the bridge trusses, on the downstream side,” town officials say.

This reopening is ahead of the schedule given to the newsroom last week by Engineering Technologist Yvon Gravel, who said he expected the bridge would be finished the week of July 28th.

The completion of the project was delayed because of the COVID-19 and “unfavourable weather” in late December 2020.

The $2.4 million project began last year after the 98-year-old bridge was deemed a potential structural concern in a 2016 report to Bracebridge council. McPherson-Andrews Contracting Limited was awarded the contract to do the work in early June 2020 in advance of the work starting later that month. The replacement bridge was designed by Planmac Engineering Incorporated.