Janesville77.1°

Whitewater's bridge to nowhere was meant for future growth

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Catherine W. Idzerda
July 9, 2012

What it is: Visitors who drive into Whitewater on Walworth Avenue/County S often wonder about the closed bridge that appears to go over Highway 12.

If they look closely at a map or at the bridge itself, they'll find that it does indeed go over Highway 12—but then stops abruptly in a cornfield.

The bridge is the southern extension of Indian Mound Parkway. On the northern side of Walworth Avenue, it leads to a subdivision filled with large homes.

"The bridge was part of road construction—the Highway 12 bypass— in 2005," said former Whitewater City Manager Kevin Brunner. "The city asked the DOT for an overpass at that location."

The idea?

The area on the other side of the bridge would be perfect for future residential expansion.

"The area is annexed into the city and is zoned for residential development," Brunner said. "It's in a good location and has access to Highway 12."

In 2008, however, the housing market took its famous nosedive, and development everywhere slowed to a standstill.

The bridge goes over the overpass and then turns into a dirt road that leads to farm fields and one of the city's municipal wells.

The bridge was eventually closed to motor vehicle traffic because of people congregating on the other end of the bridge or drag racing it.

Now, local residents use the bridge to walk their dogs or to take a pleasant stroll over farmland and Highway 12.



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