Updated: 11/22/2013 4:20 PM KSTP.com By: Heidi Enninga
Photo: KSTP/Todd Raaen
State leaders officially dedicated the new Hastings Bridge to the people of Minnesota on Friday.
After three years of work, all lanes of traffic on the new bridge are open to the nearly 30,000 vehicles that will use it to cross the Mississippi River every day.
The bridge now supports four lanes of traffic, which is necessary to eliminate gridlock. It is now the longest free-standing arch rib on the continent.
The new distinctive design includes a 12-foot-wide pedestrian and bicycle pathway and artistic murals in the plaza area. Craig David, a local artist, designed the two stone murals that represent Hastings and its natural surroundings.
Minor construction will continue until 2014 on the $130 million project.
For more information about the bridge, motorists and community members should call the Hastings Bridge Project hotline at 651-775-5244 or visit the project website.