Algonquin officials opted for tradition over edginess when it came to choosing a design for a $3.1 million pedestrian bridge that will one day cross Randall Road.
During a committee of the whole meeting Tuesday night, all of the village board members selected a bowstring bridge with brick pillars that would blend into the surrounding landscape. That bridge won many of them over because the pillars featured the village seal.
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"I think it coordinates (with) what we have downtown and brings it out to Randall (Road)," Trustee Debby Sosine said "It unites the village more architecturally."
The pedestrian bridge is slated to go over Randall Road at Bunker Hill Drive -- it was one of five locations under consideration and proved to be the most popular among residents.
A federal grant is subsidizing 80 percent of the work, while Algonquin and McHenry County will split the remaining 10 percent. The process has been under way since 2008 when the village commissioned a feasibility study to determine the best location for the bridge.
Its purpose is to improve safety for pedestrians -- particularly those at nearby Jacobs High School -- and for cyclists crossing busy Randall Road.
Its aim is also to provide a link between the Woods Creek bike path and Stonegate Parkway.
While all of the board members -- acting as the committee of the whole -- liked the brick bowstring design, Trustee Jim Steigert was hoping the village would select something less traditional.
He liked two other bowstring bridges that had a precast arch design, one with an elaborate "X" on the ground and the other that had what Steigert called a "dinosaur" on the ground.
"We could have done like a Picasso here," Steigert said. "Attracted worldwide attention."
Trustees disagreed on the colors for the bridge, but they don't have to choose those until much later, said Michael Kerr, executive vice president for Christopher B. Burke Engineering.
Construction on the 10-month project is expected to start in 2014, Burke said.
The full village board is expected to take a vote on the final design at a future meeting.