Esplanade Riel opens to public |
WINNIPEG - December 30, 2003 - Esplanade Riel, Winnipeg's new pedestrian bridge, will open to foot traffic on New Year's Eve at approximately 5 p.m.
Work will continue on the building (earmarked for a restaurant) located on the bridge's centre plaza, throughout the winter and spring months. Final works on the plazas located at each end of the bridge and project landscaping will take place in spring/early summer. A grand opening will be scheduled for June, 2004.
"Esplanade Riel is the spectacular result of a team approach and the Government of Canada is pleased to be a partner in this endeavour," said Dr. Rey Pagtakhan, Minister of Western Economic Diversification. "It is part of a larger, shared vision we have of this city, a vision of renewed strength and vitality."
Mayor Glen Murray says, "Esplanade Riel is a wonderful example of art as public works that grows more exciting each day work progresses. I take pride in welcoming Winnipegers onto their new landmark structure."
"There has been much anticipation amongst the public regarding the opening of the bridge," says Jim Thomson, Director of Public Works, "Areas where works continues, have been segregated so the public can safely use the bridge."
Esplanade Riel links Provencher Boulevard with pathways to the Forks and Water Avenue.
The pedestrian bridge is part of the $72 million, Provencher Twin Bridges project, which includes a new four-lane divided vehicular bridge as well as new roadways and sidewalks linking the bridges to Downtown Winnipeg and Waterfront Drive.
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