Officials from the Village of Muir are holding a groundbreaking ceremony for their new $3.5 million bridge on January 28 at 10 AM at their existing bridge over the Maple River. See the Youtube Video for a summary of this great story below.
The Heart of the Matter
The Village of Muir needed a new bridge over the Maple River for safety, convenience, and economic reasons, and nothing has stopped this community from making it happen. “It has been incredible to see a community pull together and achieve this,” Washler says of the 3-year fundraising effort. “They wouldn’t give up. That’s why they’ll see this bridge built.”
Grassroots fundraising efforts included a jelly bean sale at the Ionia County Fair, a lemonade stand, Lions Club lotteries and engraved brick sales. To date, Village leaders have volunteered nearly 900 hours of their personal time to raise money for this project.
Village President Doug Hyland has made multiple presentations to other local stakeholders to find support for the project. After these efforts, the Village of Muir is within $50,000 of reaching it fundraising goal of $3,608,000 to complete the funding package for this project.
The Project Vision
The Village of Muir hired Prein&Newhof and HH Engineering to design the new two-lane bridge to replace the existing structure spanning the Maple River just south of the Village’s central business district. The new bridge will not replace the existing bridge; the old bridge will accommodate traffic during construction and then be rehabilitated and converted to a non-motorized trail connecting the newly-opened CIS trail segment through Muir. The rehabilitation includes restoring its historical appearance with the removal of a cantilever deck that was added in the 1950s.
The project was bid in November 2014, with the bid amount of $2.99 million, about 5% below the Engineer’s Estimate.
Construction on the new bridge begins this winter and is expected to be complete by fall 2015 and the non-motorized bridge complete by summer 2016.
The groundbreaking marks a major milestone in the project after a three-year effort by Muir officials to raise enough money to make their dreams a reality.