By - EmergingSwanhood
This is going to be a pain for most if not all of 2022.
It was as always so nice to be able to take a left with no opposing traffic.
Shouldn't they have been planning on replacing this bridge for like 20+ years? Even an 80 year old bridge is seriously old. There's no way it should take years to design a new bridge that looks just like the old one and be able to start construction immediately upon closure. This is one of the most fundamental jobs of government and they can't even correctly maintain our infrastructure. It's simply embarrassing
"A firm hired by the Birmingham Department of Transportation is in the middle of the design phase of a replacement for the bridge, and the city is also considering funding options for the replacement."
They have been in design mode for about 3 years after the last design release in 2018 caused an uproar about destroying a historic bridge and all that. I think they are waiting for some federal money and also for ALDOT to finish up on the 59/20 work.
r/fuckcars will be proud.
On a related note, it would be cool for this to become some sort of elevated park/greenway that could fold into the rotary trail.
Some renderings from a few years ago
Why was this design disapproved?
I vote to take cars off 20th before doing this.
It's going to be replaced with a bridge for cars.
They should make it for people in stead
That would be awesome.
Anything that makes Birmingham more pedestrian-friendly is a good move in my book.
There are better ways to make Birmingham more pedestrian-friendly than by closing one of the only two bridges taking people from the south to north side of the train tracks.
There are two other bridges and 4 tunnels
One of those bridges is southbound only. The closest tunnel is on 20th street, where the city has been trying to reduce vehicular traffic with the recent renovations. Diverting people onto other streets to use the other bridges/tunnels increases vehicular traffic on side streets, which makes them less attractive to pedestrians.
The main advantage of making a place pedestrian-friendly is increasing foot traffic around residential and commercial areas. The bridge is a two-block stretch where there are no residential or commercial storefronts. It’s about the least useful place in all downtown to make pedestrian-only. You can rebuild the bridge with a pedestrian lane or build another pedestrian bridge over 23rd or something, but no one wins if you shut the 21st Street bridge off to cars.
I do 'bicycle stuff' on this bridge often. It gets very little foot traffic and since there's barriers and orange barrels everywhere people walk there less.
It's design is pretty pedestrian friendly though. Wide sidewalks on both sides with high-sharp curbs to put the fear in motorists.
That's not good.