Ribbon Cutting Held For New Bern Drawbridge

It was all a formality but one that New Bern residents were proud to relive.

The ribbon was cut Monday by transportation officials on the new Alfred Cunningham Drawbridge.

The bridge opened to traffic and pedestrians Friday.

The bridge was originally supposed to open in November, but weather and other delays pushed back the date four times.

The new 41-million dollar bridge does not come without controversy either. It will cost the city about 160,000 dollars to maintain and operate.

Governor Beverly Perdue was scheduled to speak, but was unable to attend the event. Her office says she is not feeling well.

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The long awaited Alfred Cunningham Drawbridge is now open to traffic in downtown New Bern.

A group of about 50 downtown merchants were the first to use the new bridge, walking across around 9:00 a.m. Traffic was allowed to use the span around 10:30 a.m.

The new double bascule bridge was originally supposed to open in November, but weather and other delays pushed back the date four times to Friday.

A ribbon cutting ceremony is planned for the event at 11:00 a.m. Monday.


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Friday is a big day for residents and downtown merchants in New Bern.

The Alfred Cunningham Drawbridge is set to reopen, after about three years of construction.

The new double bascule bridge was originally supposed to open in November, but weather and other delays pushed back the date four times to Friday. A ribbon cutting ceremony is planned for the event at 11:00 a.m. Monday.

Amid much controversy, the city will pay to operate and maintain the state-built bridge, which could cost taxpayers around $160,000 a year.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Its 2010 on Mar 23, 2010 at 06:58 AM
    It is 2010 and we're still building bridges for just oil country-supporting, gas guzzling cars? Where are the pedestrian walkways and bike lanes on these projects? When are we going to stop promoting unhealthy lifestyles and start encouraging people to move about in healthy ways?
  • by Well I'll be Location: New Bern on Mar 23, 2010 at 02:40 AM
    If we could go 3 years without a bridge did we really need one anyway. I guess with all the utilites rate hikes and property tax increases we need somewhere to spend all that money. You think??
  • by New Berner Location: New Bern on Mar 22, 2010 at 09:40 PM
    Its taken about 3 years for this drawbridge to be completed! Was this a "contest" about who could take the longest time to complete with the Highway 17 bypass? Hope this crew is not headed to the Atlantic Beach bridge next....
  • by Sara Location: Rocky Mount on Mar 22, 2010 at 07:08 PM
    My mother lives in New Bern. She said it should have been built with the other new high rise and it should have been a high rise also. What was the point in building another slow to open, holding up traffic bridge.
  • by Anonymous on Mar 19, 2010 at 07:35 PM
    Well this is just nice.Another job ending and higher unemployment rates!
  • by OutsideLookingIn Location: ENC on Mar 19, 2010 at 02:36 PM
    Wow, it was operational as it was, but so what? I read that the company that bought the old bridge made a statement that the old bridge just needed a new paint job, and some cleaning/maintenance, but here is the new one. I can't wait to see how much more traffic 'streams' into downtown New Bern, resulting in an influx of local profit, new jobs, and a cleaner downtown image. Let's see...
  • by Rail to GTP on Mar 19, 2010 at 11:47 AM
    Useless starts and ends with me!
  • by hindsite Location: raleigh on Mar 19, 2010 at 09:00 AM
    Not to worry. Next year when the warranty runs out the bridge will be shut down for either boat or car traffic. It is just one more thing that your government has done for you.
  • by kevin Location: pollock st new bern on Mar 19, 2010 at 08:58 AM
    It's a beautiful day in New Bern....... What a great town now with the bridge open and Broad st open it is just beautiful... I just think we did not need to own a bridge but what is done is done... so lets all enjoy the bridge and may we all live to see a new one built when this one needs to be repaced...
  • by Jethro Bodine Location: New Bern on Mar 19, 2010 at 08:02 AM
    It's been so long since that bridge was open, I've forgotten about it. I'll need to get use to having that route again. To MadDog: Your comments are narrow-minded and silly. I can't take you seriously. Maybe you should save your dimes instead...I think the banks will give you free coin rolls to make it easier to handle them. Once you get a full roll, you can buy yourself lunch...which may help your mental faculties (which seem a bit out-of-whack). I would suggest you see a doctor, but that would require hundreds of dime rolls! Please, whatever you do, don't take any wooden nickels. Wood is what bridges are made of...
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