Part of the Purple People Bridge will be reopened to pedestrians with access allowed only from the Kentucky side of the Ohio River, said Jack Moreland, the president of the Newport Southbank Bridge Company.
It will open to the public at 9 a.m. Thursday morning, Moreland said.
The pedestrian bridge was closed May 11 after a large stone fell from the bridge into the first pier on the Cincinnati side and created a safety hazard. Officials said other stones were also loosened as well.
The pier, which is on dry land usually unless there is flooding, is part of the approach on the Ohio side of the river to the bridge, Moreland said.
“It’s not part of the bridge proper,” he said.
WSP USA Inc.,the engineering firm hired by the bridge company, determined metal supporters between the bridge itself and the bridge approach are detached from one another, so that risk is contained to the Ohio side approach, Moreland said.
The Purple People Bridge, which opened in 1872, was the first railroad bridge across the Ohio River in Cincinnati. It was the second bridge across the waterway. The John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge opened in 1866 was the first bridge across the river. The Purple Bridge was substantially rebuilt in 1897 when piers were widened.
The damaged pier was part of a later addition to allow for automobile usage, and was not one of the original piers constructed for the railroad bridge, Moreland said.
People will be blocked from entering or exiting the Ohio side of the…