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Aerial shot of the emergency pedestrian bridge connecting 172-174 street.

172 – 174 Street Pedestrian Bridge: From Concern to Curiosity

“Many quotes have been stated around fear of the unknown. However, my favorite is “Replace fear of the unknown with curiosity.”

By George “Bud” Scholl, Mayor

Monday, April 30, 2018 — I very much wished for many years that concerns over the construction of our newly completed Emergency/Pedestrian Bridge (the EP Bridge) joining North Bay Road from 172 Street to 174 Street could be replaced with curiosity!

For several years we have had plans to build a bridge for pedestrians, bicycles and an occasional emergency vehicle over the canal that is located just to the south of 174th Street at North Bay Road. The idea of the bridge was a vision of the City’s founders and a product of the process that created our comprehensive plan when our City was formed. It took several years and thousands of hours of planning, permitting and construction to finally enable us to complete the EP Bridge a few months ago.

The bridge was controversial over the years due to many misconceptions and rumors over the purpose and use of the bridge, a lot of which was simply driven by concerns over the unknown. Now that the EP Bridge is complete, it is an essential element of creating continuity within the inner core of our City. Additionally, the bridge has quickly become a mini-park that is frequented each evening by hundreds of residents who enjoy strolling while admiring the views from this newest attraction. Children can now walk and bike to school from many areas south of 174th Street without ever coming near Collins Avenue. In short, the EP Bridge is a huge success. With its completion, we have accomplished making our community much safer for our children and pedestrians and ultimately improving our quality of life in Sunny Isles Beach.

We have some other pedestrian bridge projects we are trying to move forward that have been facing some of the same concerns and misconceptions as the EP Bridge. As we move these projects along, what we hope for is that concern can be replaced with curiosity.

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