Saturday, March 9, 2019

Painting the Purple People Bridge

OK, I can understand why some highway bridges over the Ohio River don't have sidewalks. Some such bridges are for roads on the Eisenhower interstate highway system. Those highways aren't supposed to have pedestrians on them to begin with, so that's understandable. And some bridges have a city on one side of the river and now a whole lot on the other.

But some bridges do have nice sidewalks. And at least two over the Ohio — the Purple People Bridge at Cincinnati and the Big Four Bridge at Louisville — are former railroad bridges retrofitted for pedestrian traffic. If there are other pedestrian-only bridges that I don't know about, please let me know.

Anyway, the reason for this post is that the Purple People Bridge needs paint. From a news release dated March 3:

The Newport Southbank Bridge Company (NSBC), the nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that owns and operates the Purple People Bridge, has launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for capital improvements the pedestrian-only bridge between Cincinnati and Newport.

The GoFundMe campaign seeks to obtain financial support from the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky community in connection with NSBC’s capital campaign to raise at least $1 million to repaint and maintain the iconic structure. ...

Every month an average of 71,000 people run, walk, bike and skate across the Purple People Bridge. The bridge is owned and operated by the Newport Southbank Bridge Company, a private 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that operates and maintains the bridge. The bridge can be rented out for private events, weddings, and parties.

I've been on the bridge once. The next time I go to Cincinnati, I'll do it again if the weather is good. I will say that walking up the hill to get on the bridge, at least on the Kentucky side, can be a gasser if you don't have good lungs or if you aren't in the best physical shape. Once I was up on the bridge, it was pretty enjoyable.

Entering one lane of the Purple People Bridge from the Kentucky side.

When I checked this evening, the GoFundMe campaign had raised $1,240 of its $100,000 goal.

I hope to be in the Louisville area this spring to check something out. If I do make it down there, I plan to give the Big Four Bridge a try. If you have any suggestions about best days of the week or best time of day for doing so, please pass them along.