Murray Baker is open, leaders say it’s shining a spotlight on Peoria

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) Central Illinois motorists can forget your detours and go back to your original routes. The last few barricades were removed from the Murray Baker Bridge Saturday.

After a renovation that took seven months, elected officials, leaders with the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and community members stood outside the Peoria Riverfront Museum to see the completed product of the $42.2 million project.

“This is a symbol for the greatness of our city,” said Rep. Ryan Spain (R-Peoria). “Something that we can look at and be proud of and will always be inspired.”

Officials say the work could not have been done without a strong bi-partisan effort, and their hoping the community believes it was worth the wait.

“This is going to be iconic,” said Mayor Jim Ardis. “People around the state are going to be talking about this, people around the Midwest are going to be talking about this. It’s just going to be one more thing to draw people to Peoria as we transform ourselves into the coming years.”

The new bridge has 502 decorative lights, 33 roadway lights and 8 navigation lights.

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