The Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge is a 3,000-foot (910 m) footbridge across the Missouri River between Council Bluffs, Iowa, and Omaha, Nebraska. It opened on September 28, 2008.
Interest in a landmark bridge across the Missouri River arose after Omaha and Council Bluffs started changing their older crossings with girder bridges that do not have towers (most significantly the Ak-Sar-Ben Bridge). The bridge is called after former Nebraska Senator Bob Kerrey, who secured $18 million of federal funding for the bridge in 2000.
The bridge was upgraded in 2004 after the most affordable bid for the job was $44 million. In May 2006, a last cable-stayed bridge style by Kansas City engineering and architectural firm HNTB was picked for the bridge. The $22 million bid consisted of 2 200-foot (61 m) towers and a clearance of 52 feet (16 m) above the river. Groundbreaking for building of the bridge occurred on October 26, 2006.
The bridge is north of the Interstate 480 (I-480) girder bridge and links the Port of Omaha’s Miller Landing to One Renaissance Center in the former Dodge Park Playland in Council Bluffs.
The lights on the bridge were donated by Gallup, which has their corporate headquarters and Gallup University situated on the Missouri River adjacent the Omaha landing of the bridge. The bridge lights include programmable controls that can display several colors in the large lights at the top of the towers and alter brightness and timing of the lights that run the whole length of the bridge.
The lights were formally unveiled in a ceremony on September 13, 2008. The bridge lights were switched on while the Phil Collins tune “In The Air Tonight” was played over a PA system. The event was accompanied by fireworks.
Due to safety issues triggered by the 2011 Missouri River floods, the entrance on the Iowa side was closed on July 2 of that year. It reopened September 3, 2011. In 2015, the bridge signed up with Twitter as @BobTBridge, an effort by the Omaha Convention & Visitors Bureau.
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