ST. CHARLES, Mo. – City engineers gear up to submit a request to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to pay for the reconstruction of the Frontier Park Pedestrian Bridge after it was destroyed in the late July floods.
Visitors had just gotten used to the newly reconstructed pedestrian bridge in Frontier Park when late July storms brought historic flooding and sent the city of St. Charles back to square one.
The high waters washed away the bank of the creek and ripped away $300,000 of work in just a matter of days.
“I was just so heartbroken,” said St. Charles resident Mary Barfeild.
Between the erosion, debris, and the broken bridge itself, building back won’t be easy.
“I hope we get it back soon,” said St. Charles resident Will Hackmann.
The bridge has been closed off to the public for months, but city officials gave FOX 2 behind the scene access where much of the bridge is still intact.
The question for city engineers: will they be able to reinforce the bridge once it’s reconstructed?
“Within the next month or so, we’ll be pulling the existing steel and composite bridge out to inspect it and make sure it’s safe to reuse and then we’ll have to have a geotechnical engineer come out to take soil samples to determine what kind of foundation have to go back to hold that bridge up,” said Brad Temme, City of St. Charles director of engineering.
Officials estimate a new bridge will run half-a-million dollars.
“There’s always a lot going on in downtown St. Charles, so it is a priority to get this back up and operational,” Temme said.
The city will submit a final request to FEMA in the next two months, hoping they will approve most of the cost.
Bridging tourists and locals alike back together come spring 2023.