OREGON CITY, Ore. – The historic Arch Bridge has reopened in Oregon City, after a 21-month closure.
The bridge connects Oregon City to West Linn, via Highway 43 and more than 14,000 vehicles are expected to cross it every day. Drivers likely won't notice many changes because since the bridge is listed on the National Registry of Historical Places, it must look like it did before.
The bridge has been strengthened to better withstand earthquakes, its guard rails are sturdier and its lighting has been improved, according to the Oregon Dept. of Transportation. The bridge could not be widened, but some of its posts were moved back five inches to give drivers a bit more room.
The bridge cost $15 million to upgrade, which was covered mostly by federal funding.
There is still a little more work to be finished. The entire project is slated for completion by late December. The past two years have been difficult for business owners in downtown Oregon City who saw profits and customer numbers drop after the closure.