| 1 min read | by Doug Marrin |
Construction on two bridges for the Border-to-Border Trail in Dexter-Huron Metropark begins in earnest today. When completed, the bridges will span the Huron River giving pedestrians and cyclists access to the little known and seldom used oxbow section of the park.
Construction begins Monday, July 8, and is expected to take several months with intermittent river closures. For most of this time the river will remain passable with safety buoys in place to guide paddlers and tubers away from the construction. Work on the bridges is expected to completely close the river with exact dates and times yet to be determined.
Exact dates for river closures will be posted approximately a week in advance on the project page on the Washtenaw County Road Commission’s website. The project page will provide more detailed information and a way to sign up for ongoing project updates, including notifications of river closures.
The bridges will connect approximately 80-acres of the Dexter-Huron Metropark with about 40-acres of park across the river. This section of the park is undeveloped and accessible only by river or by using the railroad’s two-track next to the rails. The distinct U-shaped meander in the river where the two bridges will be places is called an “oxbow” referring to the U-shaped metal pole that fits the underside of the yoke used to harness oxen.
The trail with the new bridges are part of the ongoing construction of the Border-to-Border Trail that will eventually run from one end of Washtenaw County to the other and serve as part of the Iron Belle Trail, which is a statewide trail with a proposed 1,259 mile hiking route and 774 mile biking route.
This section of Border-to-Border Trail will connect Dexter to Ann Arbor benefiting cyclists and pedestrians by providing a safer transit route parallel to the Huron River and Huron River Drive.