Jay County residents push to save The Big Blue Bridge

Published: Mar. 13, 2023 at 12:42 PM EDT
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PORTLAND, Ind. (WPTA) - A group in Portland made it their mission to save The Big Blue Bridge before it’s too late.

The group, “Friends of The Big Blue Bridge,” said the 81-year-old steel truss bridge is the last of its kind in Jay County, and residents are hoping for the bridge to be restored.

The bridge spans the Salamonie River on Highway 26. According to INDOT officials, they plan to remove the bridge and replace it with a new one.

Though they say they are not willing to change the outcome of the bridge, they did offer to relocate it, which would include dismantling the bridge.

However, a government body would need to sign a guarantee for $489,400 to dismantle, label, and restore the blue bridge. The group wanting to save the bridge, though, would have to provide grants supporting a majority of the amount in order for a government body to support the relocation funding.

Group leaders tell 21Alive, they lost some hope to save the Big Blue Bridge. Jenny Bricker of Friends of the Big Blue Bridge says that “It’s been an uphill battle,” and that the group has “taken it as far as they can go.”

INDOT’s construction of the new bridge begins the first week of April.

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