Should Kingston’s Wurts Street Bridge Become A Pedestrian Walkway?
The historic Wurts Street Bridge in Kingston was recently closed to vehicular and foot traffic. The question is, what comes next? A petition was recently started by a Hudson Valley resident that proposes the bridge be rehabilitated and transformed into a pedestrian walkway for people who live in the neighborhood and beyond.
Wurts Street Bridge opened to the public in 1921 and provides a vital link from Kingston to Port Ewen. According to HistoricBridges.org, the structure measures approximately 1,000 feet long and is 23 feet wide. It has been closed frequently in recent years for repairs and needs expensive maintenance work done to be put back into commission. Previous closures have seen the roadway closed but the walking path still open but that's not the case this time around.
Kingston resident, and host of the Much More Music podcast, Mary Kate Burnell started the petition on Change.org and brings up some interesting points in support of transforming the bridge into a full-time walkway. Nearby Route 9W is not properly equipped to handle foot or bicycle traffic and is dangerous particularly during peak traffic times.
A reimagined Wurts Street Bridge could be a boon for local tourism and offer an improvement in terms of quality of life for those living in local neighborhoods. So the question is, if repairs to fully fix the bridge is too expensive, should local officials starting considering turning Wurts Street Bridge into a walkway over Kingston's Rondout Creek?