Well, part of one. Because of the construction of the new Milton Madison Bridge that spans the Ohio River, the old bridge has to be removed. This is being done in a series of scheduled demolitions: the first of which was on Tuesday.
Everyone has been looking forward to the completion of this project and anticipating the demolition…it’s not often that you get the chance to see something like this. The riverfront was crowded with people. I think everyone had a camera to document this historic event and I was no exception.
We headed to the riverfront to find a prime viewing spot a little before 9am on Tuesday. Cameras, phones, and iPads in hand, we tromped through the wet grass to stake out our spot. The local radio station was providing continuous updates and rumors were circulating through the crowd. No one knew what to expect. I think sirens were to sound to mark the 5 minutes before and again to mark 1 minute before the big boom.
My strategy was to park myself up against a big tree so that I wouldn’t fall down the slope when the blast took me by surprise. So I sat at the base of the tree and kept reminding myself not to jump when I heard the noise. Of course, the camera was acting strange and because it was humid, the lens kept fogging up. I had my iPad ready, too.
The first sirens went off but I was expecting some kind of claxon sound not just normal sounds of police car sirens. The second sirens went off – one minute to go. A thousand sirens could have gone off and I could have chained myself to the tree but it wouldn’t have made any difference. It still took me by surprise and I still jumped. It was fast, it was loud, and there was a lot of smoke.
The middle span of the old bridge was sitting in the river waiting to be picked up and taken away. It was kind of sad to see this piece of history that had served these communities for 80ish years reduced to scrap. But…the new bridge is wider and sturdier and we can’t wait for the whole project to be completed.
We’re so happy to have a new bridge that we are having a Celebrate the Slide Party this weekend. Our new bridge will be sliding onto the renovated piers sometime this fall but we’re partying along the riverfront this weekend. There will be all kinds of slide related activities & food available. It is definitely an event for the whole family.