Schantz Avenue bridge project nearing completion

Construction on the Schantz Avenue bridge located over South Dixie Highway in Kettering and the retaining wall along the roadway were finished this week.

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The city is installing a public art installation as part of the reconstruction of the bridge. Vicki Scuri of Lake Forest Park, Wash., earned the selection as the artist from 94 artist submissions from around the world.

Regarding her design for the project, Scuri says, “the artwork should promote a more livable environment and celebrate Kettering and its residents.”

Scuri’s proposal includes pattern designs derived from the stained-glass of the trolley cars that ran along Dixie, and past and present stories, events and inventions discovered during her research and interviews.

The proposal also addresses the required addition of a security fence on the bridge, which Scuri designed as a marker, or gateway, into Kettering to be experienced both entering and leaving the city.

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The cost of the project was $2.7 million.

“Minor work might be done next week, and the project will be dormant until spring. The remaining construction work will be completed and the art installed in spring,” Azbill said.

The Ohio Department of Transportation awarded the city $1.3 million of federal funds to reconstruct the bridge.

“We also appreciate the patience of those who utilize these corridors,” Azbill said. “We anticipate this bridge to last 75 years as the original did.”

The art installation is also expected to be a long-lasting component of the bridge.

“Rather than reconstructing another unremarkable concrete bridge structure with utilitarian chain-link fence, we collaborated with our CitySites Public Art Program to seek an artist who designed a one-of-a-kind public art installation,” city officials said in a statement.”

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