Community members in Etowah County rallied together to gain more than 4,000 signatures, petitioning the reconstruction of a bridge that is nearly 80 years old. However, that still isn’t going to get the project completed. The City of Southside attempted to take matters into their own hands in regards to the reconstruction of Gilbert Ferry Bridge. This bridge crosses the Coosa River from Southside to Rainbow City.
City Council member, Dana Snyder was recently invited to a meeting with the Gadsden-Etowah Metropolitan Planning Organization, where she learned that the committee has to recommend road and bridge projects to the state’s Department of Transportation. It is at that point where projects are in competition with other Metropolitan Planning Organization around the state. Each project also has to be on the 30 year plan with the MPO upon submission and the bridge project is not on the Gadsden-Etowah’s MPO plan.
Snyder believes that the Gilbert Ferry Bridge needs to be replaced to ensure safety in addition to eliminating traffic congestion. Snyder says Southside residents cannot wait another 30 years for the 80 year old bridge to be replaced and hopes to have an alternate solution soon.