by Max Brantley
Construction of the U.S. Highway 70 (Broadway) Bridge has progressed to a point that the off-ramp carrying southbound traffic across the Arkansas River to westbound State Highway 10 is ready to open to traffic, according to Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) officials.
Although the ramp is ready to open, the city of Little Rock has requested it remain closed until the conclusion of Riverfest this weekend. Currently the city has a permit from the
AHTD to close State Highway 10 (La Harpe Blvd.) between State Street and West Markham Street for security purposes. The new ramp deposits traffic within this closure. Late Sunday
night as barricades are removed and La Harpe is reopened, the new ramp will open and will be available for the Monday morning commute.
Work continues on the new bridge and its features including the much-anticipated pedestrian walkway that crosses the Arkansas River on the east side of the structure. The walkway remains closed while the contractor utilizes the space to complete work on both sides of the river including installation of a small truss bridge on the Little Rock side.
Estimated completion of the pedestrian walkway – which connects to the Arkansas River Trail – is anticipated sometime later this summer.