Historic Bridge to be Restored

Former Union Pacific Boonville bridge gets a second chance

POSTED: 01:48 PM CST Dec 17, 2012    UPDATED: 06:34 AM CST Feb 22, 2013 

***UPDATE 7:40 P.M.*** The Katy Bridge is a truly historic bridge and many people in Boonville want to preserve that history, but it will cost $3.5 million to do so. Now the Save the Katy Bridge Coalition is finally making headway, according to Paula Shannon who is the chair of the non-profit organization. Since 2005 they have been doing their best to make sure that the bridge wasn't demolished, as they had ownership issues. Union Pacific originally owned the property, but is now signing over the rights to the bridge so that it can be restored and fully functional once again. Gary Nauman, the Boonville Director of Parks and Recreation said, "It's one of the few lift-span bridges that are left and are still operating." They are looking at taking the bridges restoration in strides as it will take a few different phases to make sure that it can work efficiently. The coalition is still looking for grant money, but is confident it will be able to get the independent funding. For more information on this story and the bridge you can go to: http://www.savethekatybridge.org/ ***ORIGINAL STORY*** "It still has a number of years left in it." The Director of Parks and Recreation says the bridge is very special to Boonville. It's one of the few lift-span bridges that are left and are still operating. Although it hasn't been used for almost twenty years, the Save the Katy Bridge Coalition fought Union Pacific for ownership of the bridge. Both parties concerned worked out a detail, where Union Pacific is now going to give the bridge to the city of Boonville. The Parks Director says they're lucky because the electricity still works in the bridge, and while waiting for funds plans for repair are already rolling out." "Phase 1 will be up to the first tower, Phase 2 will actually be the lift system itself and making it work." Nauman tells us the lifts-span is still operational. "The next phase will be doing the 3 span that is on the far side linking it back to land again." The coalition says the bridge would be able to travel one flat span, the lift span itself, and then three more flat spans on the north side of the river. Now the coalition is working out the funds to see if they can get it to be fully operational. "The city has the Save the Katy development fund, and we have our own Katie Coalition funding, and we will match each of those entities put into the grant." The chair tells us she firmly believes this grant will go through as there are numerous tax benefit opportunities for those involved.