A safe passageway that gets cyclists and joggers from one side of Busse Woods to another near Elk Grove Village is getting some national recognition.
The 280-foot-long, 12-foot-wide pedestrian bridge installed last year over Higgins Road has been named transportation project of the year by the American Public Works Association.
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Officials talked about building the overpass for nearly five years, but it wasn't until federal funding came through that the project moved forward. And there was greater urgency to get the project off the ground in May 2013, when Rosaleen Waters, a 46-year-old Elk Grove Village resident, was struck and killed by a motorist as she was crossing Higgins near the exit ramp of Route 53/Interstate 290.
Village officials were able to secure about $2.15 million in federal dollars to build the $2.7 million bridge. Construction began in July 2013 and finished ahead of schedule in November.
"If this bridge were in, she'd be alive today," said Mayor Craig Johnson.
The village has helped pay for each of three pedestrian bridges in Busse Woods, which isn't technically located within the village limits, Johnson said.
"We kind of treat Busse Woods as our own woods," he said.