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Swinging Bridge back in action

Custom-made piece caused five weeks of downtime

By Amy H. Peterson - Staff Writer | Jun 14, 2021

The Estherville Swinging Bridge has a long history of spanning the West Fork, Des Moines River, and has had a few complications in the present day. Floodwaters precipitated the replacement and repair of much of the support structure along the shoreline in 2019 and 2020,. The 2012 remodel included lights, black chain-link fencing, new deck boards, painting of the support columns, and developing an attractive landing at the east access point as well as a historical information kiosk to the west.

In May, a piece of metal broke off the bottom of one of the wood steps, and city parks maintenance director Roger Hash shut it down.

Estherville Chamber director Lexie Ruter said pre-emptive replacements of other pieces could happen this fall.

“The good news is, it’s safe. It’s not broken anymore,” Ruter said.

Summer brings people back to Estherville who have moved away for family reunions and other events, and Ruter said she had received calls and had conversations with people who were concerned because they couldn’t take their traditional walk across the bridge.

“The bridge is an Estherville favorite,” Ruter said.