Residents in St. Martins have an improved transportation link once again after the Vaughan Creek Covered Bridge officially opened Thursday.
Construction began last year after the province closed the bridge in June 2017 due to deterioration. The original, built in 1935, linked St. Martins and the Fundy Trail Parkway.
Jill Green, New Brunswick’s transportation and infrastructure minister, said it is an exciting day for the community of St. Martins, the Fundy region and the province.
“As the first provincially managed covered bridge built in New Brunswick since 1951, the Vaughan Creek Covered Bridge provides an important transportation link,” said Green.
“All while paying tribute to the history and heritage of covered bridges.”
The province says the new bridge is 32 metres long, with two lanes and a pedestrian walkway to preserve the traditional design of New Brunswick’s covered bridges.
Construction costs total about $6.7 million, with the Government of New Brunswick investing around $5 million and the federal government contributing more than $1.59 million.
Saint John-Rothesay MP Wayne Long said the announcement builds on a commitment to strengthen the economy and provide rural areas with proper infrastructure.
“The reopening of the Vaughan Creek Bridge is great news for the community and will provide improved and reliable transportation infrastructure for both vehicles and pedestrians,” said Long.
“We are proud to work alongside the Village of St. Martins and the government of New Brunswick on this exciting project and celebrate its opening today.”
Officials expect the bridge’s service life is about 75 years.