Port Clinton Lift Bridge getting $12.9 million makeover

Port Clinton Lift Bridge getting $12.9 million makeover

PORT CLINTON, OH (WTOL) - The Port Clinton Lift Bridge that links the north and south side of the city is getting a makeover.

The bridge was built in 1932 and serves as the main route as it opens and closes more than four thousand times each year.

The construction will begin October 14 and is planned to be completed May 25. The waterway will be closed December to April. They chose these seven months to avoid the summer tourist season.

"They're trying to do it in a short amount of time, they are trying to meet that deadline," Beth Gillman from the Port Clinton City Council said. "There are penalties if the contractors doesn't meet it. They're aware of that."

The repairs will cost $12.9 million dollars to fix structural, electrical and mechanical replacements. ODOT held a meeting Friday morning for the public to share concerns or ask questions.

"Our biggest concern from business people on our end of things is, is it going to get done on time," Ed Fitzgerald, who is the owner of Mr. Ed's Bar and Grille said. "You know if we lose a tourist season it could devastate this whole part of Port Clinton."

Other concerns were how emergency services would be able to navigate the closure. Fire and police have made changes to ensure safety. The route to get around the bridge will take an extra 12 minutes.

While many were concerned with safety and convenience, others were hoping it kept its iconic landmark image.

"It'll look the same, they're going to preserve the way it looks from my understanding. They aren't going to change that," Gillman said. "It's still going to be the same bridge, going to have the same weight limit restrictions. It's just going to be brand spanking new."

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