There’s hope yet for the pedestrian bridge over 250

A bridge similar to the one Diane Berlin proposes at Rolkin Road already exists on Emmet Street. The difference? Rolkin’s will be longer, with the potential to be cheaper, and will feature an elevator on one side and ramps on the other. Photo by Martyn Kyle A bridge similar to the one Diane Berlin proposes at Rolkin Road already exists on Emmet Street. The difference? Rolkin’s will be longer, with the potential to be cheaper, and will feature an elevator on one side and ramps on the other. Photo by Martyn Kyle

Though building a pedestrian bridge over Route 250 at Rolkin Road may not be the Albemarle Board of Supervisors’ first priority, the proposal hasn’t gone unnoticed.

With about 350 to 400 names on petitions advocating for the bridge and a large showing of supporters at the November 11 meeting, Pantops Community Advisory Committee member Diane Berlin says the supes gave her project a lot of attention.

“We’re in the mix,” Berlin says. “They get it.”

For now, though, supervisors say improving the safety in county schools—a project that was initiated after the shootings at Sandy Hook—takes priority.

They did approve, however, a study to find a permanent location for the pedestrian bridge and fundraising, which will begin next year, according to Berlin.

While VDOT could match funds up to $10 million for the bridge, the supervisors applauded communities in other jurisdictions that fundraised their own projects.

Berlin is skeptical. “If you ask the citizens for 10 or 20 dollars,” she says, “there’s no way they’re going to come up with a million dollars.”