FORT WORTH –– For the most part, the Trinity River Vision has been just that –– a vision.
But now crews are putting in water, sewer and utility lines in north Fort Worth. Construction equipment and piles of pipe are popping up on North Main. This is the groundwork for three new bridges across a river channel that only exists in drawings that hang on office walls behind the scenes. It was approved in 2003.
"Where this new channel is getting cut in, that's where we'll construct three new bridges,” says Mark Rauscher, pointing at an illustration on his wall at City Hall.
Rauscher manages the city's part of the biggest makeover in Fort Worth history: A brand new mile and a half long river channel north of downtown. It will create a town lake and enormous potential for economic development.
"Once we get all the utilities out of the way, which will be late this fall, at that point we'll begin to see bridges go under construction" Rauscher says.
The bridges will be on North Main, White Settlement Road and Henderson Street, crossing at the Fort Worth and Western Rail line. Bids go out before the end of the year.
Bridge construction starts early next year on the Main Street and Henderson bridges. Rauscher says work on the White Settlement bridge should start a few months later. Utility work for the Henderson bridge is already complete, and construction is well underway to create traffic detours.
"I think the community is starting to see this is really happening," Rauscher says.
When the bridges are done, crews will start digging the river channel. It won't all come together for another seven years or so. But expect to see a lot more construction soon.